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Characters / Samurai Shodown - 2D Fighting Games

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Playable and fightable characters introduced in Samurai Shodown, Samurai Shodown II, Samurai Shodown III, Samurai Shodown IV, Samurai Shodown V, Samurai Shodown VI and Samurai Shodown (2019).

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Debuting in Samurai Shodown

    Haohmaru 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/01_haohmaru_4.png
Origin: Jōkamachi, Musashi Province, Japan Flag note 
Weapon: Meitō Fugudoku note , a katana
Voiced by: note 
Our main hero who's out there mainly so he can get a kick out of fighting strong opponents. Likes booze, and a good scrap. As a young man, he once lost against Jubei, which encouraged him to get stronger. After said loss, he studied under Nicotine alongside Genjuro, and ends up being chosen as the school's successor, much to Genjuro's dismay. The two remain bitter rivals ever since.
  • Accidental Hero: Due to him being a Boisterous Bruiser who's only in it for a good fight, he's not at all concerned with Saving the World. He views the main bad guys in the series simply as an increased challenge (or they target him in the first place), and he always wins, accidentally saving the world in the process.
  • The Alcoholic: You never see him in a game without a jug of sake. From II onwards, one of his specials involves whacking you with it too! This also works when he's unarmed as seen in the 2019 game. "Alcoholic" is even the title of his SSIII theme.
  • Anime Hair: It seems to get bigger in every game.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Usually evidenced in the backstories and endings of other characters (for example Shizumaru and Takechiyo where he takes both lads under his wing).
  • Blood Knight: Haohmaru is fueled by the sheer thrill of a good fight.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: A more idealistic version, as well as a rare main character who follows the trope.
  • Blow You Away: His traditional projectile, Senpuu Retsu Zan (Whirlwind Rending Slash), which sends out a compact spinning tornado which throws opponents high into the air on contact.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: In 64, where he becomes a Distressed Dude courtesy of Yuga.
  • Character Title: The second game in the series is subtitled "Haohmaru's Hell Incident".
  • Death from Above: His Resshin Zan (Violent Quake Slash).
  • Hot-Blooded: Haohmaru is very loud and passionate about a good fight.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: With Oshizu, or sometimes Nakoruru when they're paired off in series cover art. Granted, Haohmaru isn't THAT huge, but not only is his hair huge, but both girls are tiny.
  • Hunk: Has broad shoulders as well as a nice muscular build, and a manly-man persona.
  • Loved I Not Honor More: He's dedicated entirely to fighting, as Oshizu and later Charlotte came to learn. He acknowledges this in his ending in the second game, where he apologises to Oshizu for their romance taking a backseat over his love of fighting.
  • Meaningful Name: Haoh translates as "supreme ruler". The suffix "-maru" was common for Japanese samurai boys, and in fact three males from the series are named as such — Haohmaru, Shizumaru and Yashamaru.
  • Moveset Clone: Deku from Samurai Shodown 64, Rasetsumaru from Samurai Shodown V-VI (based on his Bust mode) and the Brute mooks from Warriors Rage.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on legendary samurai, Miyamoto Musashi.
  • Only One Name: Orphaned at a young age, he was named "Haohmaru" by an elderly neighbour, who encouraged him to explore the world, with his new name symbolising him leaving his hometown of Jōkamachi. In contrast, almost all of his fellow Japanese characters are ascribed a surname, along with their given name — even the inhuman Gen-an (Shiranui)! However, he has always been simply "Haohmaru", and his surname remains a mystery.
  • The Protagonist: Akin to Ryu, he's involved purely for the thrill of fighting strong opponents, while naturally getting drawn in by the conflict surrounding him.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is the Red, while Genjuro is the Blue.
  • Series Mascot: Of the series, along with Nakoruru, who appears in almost all the games (with the exception of Nakoruru ADV game).
  • Shoryuken: His Kogetsuzan (Arc Moon Slash). Even has a Dash Attack variation of it called Shippuu Kogetsuzan (Hurricane Arc Moon Slash).
  • Shotoclone: Somewhat. He's got a projectile and a dragon punch-type anti-air, but they don't function like you'd expect. Nonetheless, he serves this role in the series for the most part.
  • Shout-Out: He resembles Hyakkimaru from Dororo.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": "Haohmal". Some arcade stickers include the romanization "Haōmaru" (or "Haoumaru").
  • Street Performer: His skills at tossing then sheathing his sword are used to supplement his income since he's a wandering warrior.
  • Unorthodox Sheathing: Upon winning, he stylishly throws his sword in the air, turns around as he spins the scabbard, then catches the blade in its sheath.

    Ukyo Tachibana 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/02_ukyo.png
Voiced by: note 
The series' Bishōnen, master of Iaijutsu, and formerly the main rival of Haohmaru until Genjuro debuted. Ukyo is a complete Chick Magnet who attracts ladies wherever he goes. He suffers from tubercolosis and has a crush on a certain girl named Kei Odagiri, though he avoids developing further feelings for her due to his limited lifespan. He fights purely for Kei’s happiness, questing for rare flowers he hopes she’ll like.
  • Agent Peacock: A downplayed aspect after the first game, though he’s still relatively vain, somewhat pretentious, definitely a chick magnet, and very much a pretty-boy in all his appearances.
  • Anime Hair: He sports long, silky blue hair.
  • Attack Reflector: Ukyo's Tsubame Gaeshi is capable of reflecting projectiles to make up for a lack of one.
  • Badass Back: He usually faces backwards when fighting, but if you ever see him face forward... let's just say you're dead.
  • Bishōnen: He has a beautiful, feminine face, complemented with his slender frame and long blue hair.
  • Blade Spam: One of his special moves, Concealed Sabre Snowfall Slash, has him toss an apple in the air shortly before rapidly slashing at his opponent, while also cutting the apple to pieces.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Just so you know that he doesn't have long to live.
  • Chick Magnet: In almost all games, Ukyo excuses himself to his opponent and escapes off the screen when a lot of screaming girls chase after him. All of them are of the Yamato Nadeshiko type like his beloved Kei.
  • Criss-Cross Attack: Ukyo has had a hyper move since IV in which he moves at lightning speed towards the opponent, passing through and behind him or her before sheathing his sword. A split second later, the opponent is sliced by various slashes and collapses to the ground.
  • Death By A Thousand Cuts: His Bust/Rasetsu Desperation Move from III and IV.
  • Demoted to Extra: Somewhat. In the first game, he was Haohmaru's true rival. When Genjuro arrived in the second game, he was never very relevant to the plot again and reduced to Cannon Fodder for Haohmaru (see Haohmaru's ending in IV).
  • Diagonal Cut: His Fatality, which is also ludicrously fast.
  • Handicapped Badass: He fights despite suffering from tuberculosis. See Blood from the Mouth and Ill Boy.
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: His fighting style, which also compliments his Badass Back stance. Ukyo is relatively defensive, relying on his quick sword strikes to punish his opponents' mistakes.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Most of his purpose for fighting. More exactly, his relationship with Kei Odagiri.
  • Ill Boy: He is ostensibly presented as suffering from tuberculosis, a deadly, incurable disease at the time the series is set, which is characterised by his pallid skin, pained expression, stooped stance, somewhat lank hair and of course, his hacking cough.
  • Incurable Cough of Death: A symptom of his tuberculosis — if left idle, or accessed on the character-select screen, he collapses into hacking coughs. He even wretches a little.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: His long, blue hair is waist-length.
  • Meaningful Name: A tachibana is a native Japanese orange variety. "Ukyo" means "at the right side of the capital", and is a common name.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: If Haohmaru is Miyamoto Musashi, Ukyo is Sasaki Kojiro. He's even got Kojiro's Tsubame Gaeshi as a move.
  • Playing with Fire: When using Tsubame Gaeshi, his sword's blade generates flames.
  • Reverse Grip: Started using it in the 3rd game, usually for his most damaging normal attacks and a couple specials.
  • Shout-Out: Apart of Sasaki Kojiro, he later took inspiration from Tanosuke from Dororo and Lupin III's Ishikawa Goemon XIII.
  • Speed Echoes: An interesting case where in his special move, Concealed Sabre Phantom Strike, he uses his speed echo to do a swift running slash while he simply follows after. It's almost as if he never drew his blade while performing the move.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: He and Kei are mix of this and Courtly Love. With this couple, love definitely hurts, as he’s always unwilling to fully commit due to his incurable illness.
  • The Stoic: If there's one character who presents Visible Silence perfectly, it's him.
  • Strictly Formula: In each iteration of the series, his story follows a well-trodden path, which is emphasised in the 2019 game: Ukyo finally obtains a rare flower and presents it to Kei. Their happiness lasts only fleetingly because the flower withers and dies and so Ukyo sets out on yet another journey for another rare flower.
  • Sword Beam: The ground based projectile used by his Bust/Rasetsu incarnations is this.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Apples, as seen since the first game. One of his special moves involves him tossing out an apple before slicing it (and the opponent) to pieces.
  • Tragic Hero: Ukyo is an honorable, poetic man who is condemned by a (then) incurable disease and knows that his lover Kei Odagiri will outlive him. Without ever committing to a relationship, since he knows it'll end tragically due to his short lifespan, Ukyo instead fights for Kei’s happiness, usually by giving her rare a flower, its fleeting bloom a symbol of their relationship.
  • Victory Is Boring: "The moment I drew my sword, the fight was over. Ho-hum"
  • Warrior Poet: The only two languages Ukyo speaks are Visible Silence and Haiku.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Sports almost waist-length hair in a unnatural bright blue, which is perhaps simply a heightened representation of the blue-black raven hair seen amongst some Japanese.

    Nakoruru 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/3_nakoruru.png
Origin: Kamuikotan, the Ainu Lands, Ezo Flag note 
Weapon: Houtou Chichi-ushi note , a kodachi
Helpers: Mamahaha (Normal / Shura) / Shikuru (Rasetsu)
Voiced by: note 
The heroine of the series, most of the time concerning herself with defeating the Big Bad (compared to Haohmaru, who's in just for the fight itself). She is a priestess of the Ainu tribe who fights to protect Mother Nature herself. Usually, she abhors fighting, but will absolutely not shy away from combat in defence of the natural world and is very much nature’s champion. She's usually accompanied by her pet hawk, Mamahaha, and has a little sister named Rimururu.

In later entries in the series, she becomes a nature spirit, which allows her to travel through time, thus enabling her to appear exactly as she did in the past in The King of Fighters XIV, after she notices a space-time crack in her own realm.

For more tropes of her other appearances, see Nakoruru: Ano Hito kara no Okurimono and The King of Fighters XIV.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: After overthrowing Mizuki at the end of II, she sacrifices herself to restore the natural balance and becomes one with the spirit of Nature. This allows her to appear in times of great crisis to dispel any force that would cause calamity upon the natural world. She can also appear outside of her own time, as shown in The King of Fighters XIV.
  • Badass Adorable: A top contender in video game history. Nakoruru's petite stature and sweet personality doesn't deter from the fact that she can kick copious amounts of ass, wielding her kodachi with deadly skill.
  • Badass Native: Nakoruru is a member of Hokkaido’s indigenous Ainu people and very much not a typical Yamato Japanese like the majority of the cast. The Ainu are analogous to Native Americans and are similarly portrayed in cultural references as being In Harmony with Nature.
  • Barrier Maiden: Especially after her Heroic Sacrifice and its retcon above.
  • The Beast Master: Mamahaha, a hawk and Shikuru, a wolf, both of which she can command to attack her opponent. Mamahaha can even pick her up in his claws, allowing her to float out of harm’s way — or unleash a deadly diving attack.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: A charming, sweet-natured young woman whose gentle character and appearance belies her deadly fighting prowess. In defence of the natural world, she'll go toe-to-toe with samurai, giant Westerners, and even the odd Youkai.
  • Catchphrase: Daishizen no oshioki desu! / This is Nature’s punishment! This phrase has accompanied Nakoruru in all her appearances. It seems to be her creed, and she can deliver it in cheerful or somber tones, the latter used in the particularly dark (for Nakoruru) Zetsumei Ougi in SS Zero where she kills the opponent by mounting them and stabbing them straight through the heart.
  • Celibate Heroine:
    • She's very aware of Galford's crush, but is adamant she will never get into a relationship with him, since her mission is her priority. She even tells him to not be hung up on her and live his own life before her Heroic Sacrifice.
    • The Nakoruru: Ano Hito kara no Okurimono game has her explaining that her priestess nature doesn't allow her to think or desire her own happiness, because it would be a distraction from her duty — she also says it to reject Yantamu's marriage proposal.
  • Clothing Damage: Killing Nakoruru with a strong attack will cause her clothes to be cut or torn off her body.
  • Cute Bruiser: With Lady of War overtones — Nakoruru is cute and powerful, but she's definitely not unskilled.
  • Fan Disservice: She's a beautiful girl who can have her top partially destroyed, revealing her breasts, which is potentially appealing — until her body splits in half down the middle....
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Nakoruru appears in The King of Fighters XIV as a member of the "Another World" team along with two characters from a pair of SNK Playmore pachislots. This contrivance is due to the Big Bad creating a crack in space and time that affected her realm and, being a protector of Nature, she makes it her mission to assist by time-traveling to the future.
  • Fragile Speedster: Nakoruru is fast with her attacks and movement in general, but has very low tolerance for damage and can be killed very easily — if you can catch her, as in a game featuring actual ninjas, she's even faster than all of them.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Comes with the territory for an Ainu priestess of nature like her, and she can tame and befriend animals to fight for her. Her stages are usually filled with animals, and her ending in her 1 involves a lot of animals surrounding her affectionately. She's not always successful in this though. In the V prequel game, she failed to calm a rampaging bear, despite her best efforts, resulting in the appearance of Rera.
  • Hime Cut: To further emphasis her femininity, despite the fact that she’s not a noblewoman, or even a mainland Yamato Japanese.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: A recurring theme for her in Ano hito kara no okurimono and touched on during some of her endings in Warriors Rage. She does exhibit a normal, age-appropriate desire to have fun like any other young girl, but her dedication to nature trumps that every time.
  • Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Nakoruru absolutely cannot be swayed from her mission to protect nature. Not even her own desires to be a normal young girl deviate her.
  • Kill the Cutie: Despite being an extremely beautiful girl, she is shown no mercy. Losing at the hands of the other warriors will result in Nakoruru being killed in extremely brutal ways, though in some instalments, she's is immune to this... only for it to be brought back in full force in the latter games. Canonically, this happened in II via her Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Leitmotif: Her theme song is one of the few recurring tracks in the series.
  • Lethal Chef: In the Neo Geo DJ Station drama CD, Nakoruru stews together horrendously mismatched ingredients whilst going on about how they're all natural, therefore bound to taste delicious together.
  • Mascot: Alongside Terry Bogard, she is SNK's other mascot. Unlike Athena Asamiya, however, Nakoruru is indifferent to Terry in crossover games.
  • Nature Heroine: All of her fights are dedicated to the protection of Mother Nature.
  • Nature Spirit: She ended up as one after II, following her Heroic Sacrifice, which excuses why she appeared as youthful as ever long after her death — including a guest appearance in The King of Fighters.
  • Nice Girl: Of all the characters, she's exceptionally kindhearted and gentle.
  • Onee-sama: She's is one for Rimururu and Mikato.
  • Our Fairies Are Different: She takes the physical form of a fairy after her death in the Distant Finale and at the end of Nakoruru ADV in order to aid the other characters in their battle with the Big Bad.
  • Panty Shot: Sometimes seen when she is killed by strong attacks. In the Nakoruru ADV, she wears fundoshi style underwear.
  • Promoted to Playable: Shikuru and Mamahaha are playable in VI as a team.
  • Reluctant Warrior: If it were possible, she'd rather not fight, but protecting the natural world demands that she must.
  • Reverse Grip: This is how she positions her blade in most of her stances.
  • Saving the World: Of all the characters, she exhibits the strongest sense of duty, and takes this duty seriously in her role as the protector of Nature.
  • Ship Tease: Despite her dedication to Nature, there is a lot of teasing about her and Galford. She is however a Chaste Hero, so she ends up having to let him down gently for the sake of her duty. Thankfully, Galford understands this and they usually remain good friends. Also seen in Nakoruru ADV with Yantamu.
  • Shout-Out: To the Ainu women (Oyaruru and Chiomapp) of The Dagger of Kamui.
  • Slide Attack: Annu Mutsube — a swift, dashing kodachi attack where she hurtles towards the opponent, skimming the ground, for a low hit that's tricky to block.
  • Wall Jump: Capable of doing this, even though she's not a Ninja.
  • Wild Wilderness: Her homeland. At the time the series is set, the northern island of Ezo (literally "foreigner", known nowadays as Hokkaido) was a land apart, ungoverned by the Shogunate, and not officially part of what constituted Japan. Only in 1868 did it become incorporated and prior to that, it was viewed as a wild, inhospitable wilderness by the Yamato Japanese in the south.

    Galford D. Weller 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/04_galford_7.png
Origin: San Francisco, California, New Spain Flag note 
Helper: Poppy (Normal / Shura)
Voiced by: note 
American sailor-turned-McNinja, fighting for justice. He trained under the same master as Earthquake, and completed his training to become a fully-fledged ninja. He is mostly accompanied by his pet dog Poppy, and is very much in love with Nakoruru, though she is way too focused on her mission protecting nature to focus on that. He can utilize plasma energy in the form of electric attacks that enhance his already impressive ninja skills.
  • The Beast Master: Some of his specials allows him to sic his huskie Poppy on opponents.
  • Big "NO!": He usually lets it out when he's beaten.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: An American who's big into justice and has a rambunctious enthusiasm for combat.
  • Canine Companion: His dog, Poppy, who can be used in some of his attacks.
  • Cutlass Between the Teeth: Galford's super has him perform a combination attack before throwing his sword into the air — Poppy then leaps up, grabs the sword in her mouth and spins into the opponent, before Galford ends the attack with a huge thunderbolt.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Towards Nakoruru. In a mild subversion, during his Tear Jerker ending in Samurai Shodown II, when Nakoruru's spirit apologizes to him and begs him to not be grieve for her, he immediately complies.
  • Eagleland: Mixed type. He's a boisterous American with penchant for Gratuitous English, but he's also a positive character dedicated to his quest for justice and slaying evil.
  • Fun Personified: It’s rare to see him not smiling and he’s consistently upbeat and peppy.
  • Generation Xerox: Aside from the ninja paraphernalia, he is a justice lover just like his sheriff father before him.
  • Gratuitous English: He’s voiced in his native tongue, but this being a mid-90s SNK game, it’s pure Engrish. In the 2019 game this is actually double subverted as Galford's English turns out to be pretty good, even if he sometimes mixes in English phrases within Japanese sentences.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Whilst Galford knows some ninja confusion techniques like conjuring mirror images of himself and the famous Ninja Log, he's still a Large Ham that fights alongside his equally boisterous dog and dresses in a bright blue ninja gi without a mask (with bright blond hair!), thus he stands out a mile, which fully differentiates him from Hanzo.
  • Justice Will Prevail: Lives by his father's ideals.
  • Large Ham: "LET'S GO POPPY!"
  • Lead You Can Relate To: He represents the almost prerequisite American character in the series, in a cast mostly full of Japanese characters.
  • Leitmotif: His theme song, the bizarrely named "Tuna" is one of the few recurring tracks in the series. Interestingly his theme is basically Hanzo's theme but sped up and with added instrumentation - sounding more energetic and fun, befitting Galford himself.
  • Legacy Character: Poppy from Samurai Shodown V is the mother of the rest of the games' Poppy.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Quite literally, as he actually uses lightning.
  • McNinja: He's dressed in what is almost an exact palette-swap of Hanzo, but in personality, he's as American as apple pie.
  • Meaningful Name: "Galford" is a town in Devon, England and is quite appropriately the site of an ancient Anglo-Saxon battle. "Weller" is also Anglo-Saxon, and refers to someone who lived near, or tended to a well or spring.
  • Mysterious Middle Initial: Full name: Galford D. Weller — no clues thus far on what the “D” stands for.
  • Parental Abandonment: He ran away from home, leaving his mother and his four older sisters. His father was killed by Draco.
  • Pretty Boy: His youthful looks and blond hair definitely qualify him.
  • Promoted to Playable: Poppy is playable in V and VI.
  • Scarf Of Asskicking: His most prized possession, a gift from his sensei Ayame.
  • Shock and Awe: "Plasma Blade!"
  • Shout-Out: His face is modelled after River Phoenix, and Poppy is one to the comedy manga Doubutsu no Oishasan.
  • Spinning Piledriver: He uses the Izuna Drop variant as a command throw — he is a ninja, after all. He can even do it while dashing, and in some games, even Poppy has the ability to use it!
  • Wall Jump: He's a ninja, and it’s pretty much a requirement for this game.
  • Unrequited Love: He's head over heels for Nakoruru, but due to her being a celibate priestess, she could never reciprocate. However, they understand their shared duties and decide to remain Just Friends.
  • You Killed My Father: Draco was the culprit, as we finally learn in Sen. In his own words:
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    Hanzo Hattori 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/05_hanzo.png
Origin: Dewa Sanzan, Dewa Province, Japan Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
The legendary Ninja in the service of the Tokugawa shogunate, and pretty much the enemy of anyone who opposes them. His manner is that of the classic ice-cold, super serious ninja, though he is still good friends with Jubei and Yoshitora. Behind the scenes, he's very much a family man, and his wife and sons become entangled in many of the series' events. Also makes an anachronistic appearance in KOF: Maximum Impact 2.
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Humility isn't really his thing.
  • Badass Arm-Fold: Most of his artwork poses, including the 2019 render as seen here, shows Hanzo folding his arms this way.
  • Casting a Shadow: Hanzo uses shadow magic to create a shadow ‘puddle’ which he appears from to strike his opponent after using his smoke move to teleport.
  • Cool Mask: Wears his signature ninja mask that comes with classic ninja headgear.
  • Creepy Crows: Seen on his stage in the first two games.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He looks like a sinister, sly ninja but he's actually one of the good guys.
  • Dramatic Unmask: In II and the 2019 reboot game, Hanzo's match-winning animation has him unmask himself, fully revealing his face.
  • Friendly Rivalry: He occasionally spars with his friend Yagyu Jubei.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: The few times he's been seen without his mask, we can see a BIG scar across one of his eyes.
  • Hand Seals: Hanzo does the classic ninja hand seal for his round-winning animation and certain moves.
  • Hitman with a Heart Well, he is a ninja but he's also one of the good guys.
  • Invisibility: One of his moves allows him to turn invisible.
  • Legacy Character:
    • In the Distant Finale, one of his sons (widely believed to be Shinzo) takes over the name of Hattori Hanzo and becomes head of the clan. Might run in the whole family and apply to him too.
    • A couple of characters in The King of Fighters series (Nagase in Maximum Impact 2 and Bandeiras in XIV) inherit his ninjitsu fighting style and moves in the modern era.
  • Meaningful Name: Hanzo appropriately means "half-hidden". Hattori is a venerable Japanese family name originally associated with silk-worm growers.
  • Moveset Clone: Galford was this to Hanzo at first, but quickly got Divergent Character Evolution in later games. The Iga Ninjas from Warriors Rage are straight examples though.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Hanzo serves the Tokugawa Bakufu, performing the duties presented to him and protecting the Bakufu at all costs. This puts him at odds with Yashamaru, who views the Bakufu as utterly corrupted.
  • Ninja: The series' most clear-cut example, his design is that of a classic ninja, without any particularly unrealistic flourishes.
  • Ninja Log: He was probably amongst the very first (if not the first) fighting game characters to deploy this technique (known as kawarimi) in-game, where it's used as a fake-out when he gets hit (if the command is pressed in time, that is).
  • Ninja Run: In the 2019 reboot game, Hanzo's running animation has him running low to the ground with his arms behind his body, almost in an Airplane Arms style.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: He's based on the original Hattori Hanzo, an almost mythical samurai of the Sengoku era, credited with saving the life of Tokugawa Ieyasu and then helping him to become the ruler of the united Japan. At the time the series is set, Ieyasu is already dead and his descendants are running the place, but then there's the Legacy Character trope at work, so he could be one of the Hattori Hanzos that came after the Ieyasu-era Hanzo (Hattori Masanari).
  • Papa Wolf: To Shinzo, and by extension to his pupil Kanzo.
  • Playing with Fire: Though not his main repertoire, Hanzo possesses the ability to punch the ground to create flaming coils and fiery explosions, as shown in one of his moves, Bakuen Ryu.
  • Reverse Grip: Hanzo holds his sword this way when using Issen.
  • Seppuku —> Interrupted Suicide: Was this close to committing suicide in his first ending, after he failed to save Shinzo from Amakusa. Luckily, Kanzo and his friends step in and tell him to become their mentor, which gives Hanzo a reason to carry on.
  • Scarf Of Asskicking: Sports a long, red muffler.
  • Smoke Out: Hanzo disappears in a puff of smoke and can teleport to various points around the stage (depending on the button input) and follow up with a sword strike.
  • Stock Ninja Weaponry: Apart from his ninjato, Hanzo also uses shurikens and bombs in some of his appearances.
  • The Stoic: He doesn't speak much.
  • Throw Down the Bomblet: Hanzo's super move in the 2019 game begins with him performing an Izuna Drop before throwing down multiple bombs at his opponent and leaping out of the blast radius, whilst all of his bombs explode behind him.
  • Wall Jump: Amongst the fastest, most agile characters in the game — par for the course for a ninja. He's able to jump off the stage's walls to move across faster.

    Jubei Yagyu 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/06_jubei_7.png
Origin: Tosa Province, Japan Flag 
Voiced by: note 
Another legendary Samurai (mostly based on Mitsuyoshi), he is a hardened and experienced warrior who is utterly loyal to the Tokugawa shogunate. He also likes to see potential in younger warriors and encourages them to one day overcome him. Unlike his comrade in arms, Hanzo, Jubei is a more care-free man when off-duty and enjoys times of peace with a hearty laugh.
  • Ambiguously Related: With 64's Yagyu Hanma.
  • As Himself / Fictional Counterpart: Jubei is also the protagonist in Yagyu Kachou, an official side story set in an alternate reality where Samurai Shodown characters are placed in the modern world. In this story, he is a struggling "salary man" (standard Japanese business man) who has fallen on hard times. He's often picked on by various characters from the series, though Hanzo and Tam Tam are his closest friends.
  • Blade Spam: Jubei has a signature move where he uses both of his swords to thrust in rapid succession.
  • Blind Obedience: Jubei is loyal to the Tokugawa Shogunate, even as a ronin — though some say his ronin status is a cover in order to execute missions given by the Shogunate.
  • Cool Old Guy: Outside of battle, Jubei is a very easygoing and friendly older man.
  • Counter Attack: Jubei has a counter attack that can block from low, medium, or high attacks and follow up with a move for each direction.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: He's an extra character in the Game Boy port of Samurai Shodown III. However, since he didn't get a canon Bust/Rasetsu mode until IV, he gets a completely new move-set based on bare-fisted martial arts that would never appear again.
  • Dual Wielding: With his daisho pair — a katana and wakizashi.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Legend has it that Yagyū Jūbei had the use of only one eye and most legends state that he lost it in a sword sparring session when his father, Yagyū Munenori, struck him accidentally. Whilst portraits from Jubei's time portray him as having both eyes, and several authors present him as such, his classical "eyepatch" look remains the standard.
  • Handicapped Badass: Blind in one eye, but no less of a deadly warrior.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: It's not just his character design that's grounded and robustly solid — he also has one of the most balanced, effective move-sets in the series, with a good balance between stamina, manoeuvrability and range.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Especially when there's two of them.
  • Meaningful Name: His given name, Jubei, means "10th protector".
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on Yagyu Jubei, in particular the most famous one: Mitsuyoshi. In his bio, his idol is noted to be his father, Munenori, another real-life, legendary samurai.
  • Old Master: As Haohmaru's mentor and the sword instructor for Yoshitora.
  • Pigeonholed Voice Actor: None other than Kiyoshi Kobayashi.
  • Rated M for Manly: A gruff, older man in a series with plenty of younger, more classically handsome men.
  • Samurai: Seems obvious, but along with Haohmaru, Ukyo, Genjuro and Yashamaru, he's the most clear-cut example in the series.
  • Samurai Ponytail: Sports a fairly normal top-knot in a game where Anime Hair runs riot.
  • Shout-Out: A blatant one to Yagyu Jubei of the 1981 Makai Tenshô film adaptation.
  • Signature Laugh: Jubei's winning round animation has him cross his arms and do his signature big proud laugh.
  • Sword Beam: Jubei can create a ground wave from his swords as his projectile move and can do a bigger one for both of his super moves.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: He is shown to enjoy dango, Japanese sweet dumplings.
  • You Don't Look Like You: In the first game, he sports a white haori (samurai jacket) with black symbols on it, a brown hakama with white vertical lines (similar than Ukyo) and brown arm guards. This was his primary look in the first two games and the SNK artworks of that time. After his return on IV, his look was updated (as per the portrait above) and retained for all subsequent games.

    Earthquake 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/07_earthquake_7.png
Origin: Texas, New Spain Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
Overly obese Texan McNinja. Earthquake used to learn under Galford's sensei Ayame, but quit early due to his greed. He later becomes a bandit, leading his gang to cause mischief here and there. His farts are said to be poisonous. He's always working for the bad guys, but later enters Makai, lured by the treasures there and vanishes, never to be heard of again.
  • Adapted Out: Earthquake is the only character who was cut from the Sega Genesis port of the first game, because his sprite proved to be too big for the Genesis cartridge to handle.
  • Art Shift: None of the sprites made for him are the same for his subsequent appearances — all the sprites for I, II, VI and SVC are different.
  • Ass Kicks You: Or more like, 'Ass Stomps You'.
  • Acrofatic: Look at this guy, would you ever guess that he's a ninja?
  • Bald of Evil: A bald, evil, notorious bandit.
  • Belly Flop Crushing: Has several moves that involve landing on his opponent belly-first. Given his enormous size, they're unsurprisingly devastating.
  • Big Eater: Obviously. Even seen in one of his win-poses in the second game where he’s eating a chicken leg.
  • The Cameo: Earthquake also appears in all SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighter Clash series and as one of the monsters in Akari Ichijo's super in NeoGeo Battle Coliseum.
  • Deceptive Disciple: He was a disciple of Kunoichi Ayame like Galford, but quit early due to his bad ties with the latter.
  • Dumb Muscle: Earthquake is evil, driven by money, and certainly not smart. Best seen in his II ending where he goes to Makai (the demon world) lured by the offer of money, only to get trapped there (seemingly) forever.
  • Eagleland: Type B, though toned down. He’s obese, loud, brash and vulgar, but doesn't flaunt his American status enough — at the time of course, Texas was part of New Spain, but still.
  • Epic Flail: He wields a giant kusarigama as his weapon of choice — essentially a length of chain with a weight at one end and a viciously sharp sickle at the other.
  • Evil Duo: With Gen-An, often paired by fans as the Chang and Choi of the series (seen together in Genjuro's IV and Gaira's V endings.)
  • Evil Laugh: Earthquake is fond of a villainous cackle.
  • Everything Is Big in Texas: Himself included — he hails from what was then Spanish Texas, and is positively enormous, dwarfing all other characters in the series through sheer height and girth.
  • Facial Markings: Earthquake has tattoos or face paint in the shape of blue flames around his eyes.
  • Fartillery: His horrific kick grab in the first two games, where he plants the opponent's face between his butt-cheeks and emits a noxious cloud of brown gas that sends them flying.
  • The Giant: His bio pegs him at 9’4” — making him amongst the tallest (human) characters in the fighting game genre (if not the tallest).
  • Gonk: He’s a hideous giant toad of a man and his appearance has given him a complex, with him worrying that “(my) face looks like an old woman's".
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Apart from his HUGE size, his red/neon-pink clothes don't help him at all.
  • Jiggle Physics: In the 2019 game, Earthquake has an absurdly large stomach which wobbles about as he moves around.
  • McNinja: Like Galford, he's from America, in this case, Texas. Starting from the 2nd game, he also uses ninja tricks like mirror images or the Ninja Log technique.
  • Mighty Glacier: The slow-but-strong character from the first two games, as well as the biggest character sprite by far — he’s so large that he can't be thrown by any opponent.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Earthquake is likely an homage to Mr. Pogo, a wrestler mostly prominent in The '90s. Mr. Pogo was overweight and noted for his cruelty, carrying a kusarigama into the ring and breathing fire at his opponents. In addition, Mr. Pogo wore jagged blue face-paint patterns, was considered a greedy mercantile wrestler who was only interested in money, and got his claim to fame wrestling as a villainous ninja in Texas wrestling shows.
  • Only in It for the Money: Earthquake's main reason for everything he does is money, including being recruited by Mizuki.
  • Playing with Fire/Breath Weapon: One of his super moves in the first two games is a fire-breath attack.
  • Post-Stress Overeating: His weight ballooned to a gargantuan 1380 pounds due to over-eating after he had his heart broken, aged 19.
  • Recoil Boost: His Earth Crisis super special move involves him using his fire breath to launch himself into the air like a rocket before doing a spinning belly flop onto his opponent.
  • The Rival: Galford. There’s even a Continuity Nod upon his return in VI when he claims to have forgotten about him. And in the 2019 game, Galford chastises Earthquake for using their master's techniques for evil purposes.
  • Shout-Out: Resembles the common giant mooks of Hokuto no Ken, especially Mr. Heart.
  • Spin Attack: Earthquake's signature move in which he spins with his kusarigama, debuting as a straight move and later having variants like being accessible in the air, after a teleport, and even grabbing an enemy to spin them.
  • Start My Own: Earthquake formed his own bandit gang with henchmen who loyally follow him everywhere (including to Makai).
  • Stout Strength: His gigantic size does come with great strength, and characters like Nakoruru must chip away at his health before bringing him down.
  • Unexpected Character: Made his first playable appearance in nearly a decade as a character in SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos.
  • Wall Jump: Gained this ability in the second game, since it's confirmed that he's a ninja.

    Charlotte Christine de Colde 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/09_charlotte_6.png
Origin: Paris, Kingdom of France Flag note 
Weapon: La Roche note , an épée
Voiced by: note 
A French fencer who travelled to Japan due to the trouble she sensed brewing there. After the first game, she returns to France and participates in the French Revolution. She developed an unrequited crush on Haohmaru, unaware of him already having a lover. After she finds out that Haohmaru’s already taken, she accepts the bitter truth, cuts her hair off, and returns to France, hoping to become stronger.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Her crush on Haohmaru — he only has eyes for Oshizu.
  • Battle Ballgown: She's quite modestly dressed for a fighting-game female, and sports a long, tunic-like skirt with her armour-plate.
  • Blue Blood: She's stated to be a minor noble, so her full title could well be Chevaleresse de Colde ("Lady de Colde"), though she prefers the company of commoners.
  • Combat Stilettos: Mostly in evidence in her 2019 reboot outfit, where her boots’ heels are easily 6 inches.
  • Cyanide Pill: Her suicide move from Samurai Shodown IV seems to be this.
  • Everyone Looks Sexier If French: She was designed so as to be the 'sexy', mature Foil to the cuter Nakoruru, although most of her sexiness was covered with her Battle Ballgown.
  • Fanservice Pack/Hotter and Sexier: Her updated design for the 2019 reboot, in spades. Unlike the original games, where she had a more masculine design to invoke the Rose of Versailles reference, in the reboot she is much more open about her femininity, sporting more form-fitting, high-class attire and tying her long hair into a ponytail.
  • Gorgeous Gaijin: The series’ original western woman — her theme in the first game is even titled "Foreign Woman" — and she exhibits the almost prerequisite long blonde hair and statuesque height.
  • Gratuitous French: Has gone from ear-grating to amusing to just short of decent.
    "Juéé t'êêêêêm Madeumwazzêêêll" (“I love you, Miss”)
    • For the 2019 reboot, her trailer was first released in French (to the delight of French fans) and she now bids her opponent a cheerily smug “adieu” after skewering them with her super.
  • Important Haircut: When she sees that Haohmaru does love Oshizu despite his dedication to fighting, she decides to get over it and starts by cutting her long hair with her rapier.
  • Instant Messenger Pigeon: Her method of staying in contact with France while she's on her travels is via Pierre, a messenger pigeon named after her First Love.
  • Lady of War: She's a sophisticated, classically beautiful woman who elegantly wields an épée in combat.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: She breaks into a haughty, mocking laugh when she wins a round.
  • Panty Shot: Only in Sen, and usually only when she kicks, and when she collapses after being defeated.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Following the events of the first game, she returns to France to participate in the French Revolution, despite her noble status.
  • Royal Rapier: She wields an épée in combat, which complements her elegant, French character.
  • Shotoclone: She has a projectile, a "dragon punch" style rising slash, and an attack that carries her forward — essentially the full shoto trio. She's also one of the easiest characters to pick up, play, and do well with.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Her look is very much inspired with Oscar de Jarjayes from The Rose of Versailles (without the crossdressing tendencies.)
    • Her name references Charlotte de Corday, who was an activist during the French Revolution and sent to the guillotine.
  • Something About a Rose: Like many European characters in the fighting game genre, she has a penchant for roses and the flower is featured in the design of her armour and her stage’s propping, as well as her win-pose, where she serenely holds a rose to her face.
  • Statuesque Stunner: She stands at an amazonian height of 6' — huge for a woman of her time.
  • Zettai Ryouiki: Sports these as part her redesign in the 2019 reboot.

    Tam Tam 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/10_tamtam.png
Origin: Green Hell Village, Maya Territory, Mesoamerica Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
Hero of the Green Hell tribe and protector of the Tanjil and Palenke Stones, both of which prevent Ambrosia entering the world. He was actually slain by Gaoh in the past, but one of his fellow tribesman discovered his mask and was resurrected as a new Tam Tam. Later gets turned into a chimp after his little sister Cham Cham loses the Tanjil Stone.
  • Ambiguously Brown: He sports a bronzed skin-tone, which is relatively suitable as he’s a native Mesoamerican.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: “Tam Tam” is not a name encountered in Maya, Inca or Aztec cultures and was probably chosen primarily because it sounds “jungly” and primitive.
  • Back from the Dead: Sort of — after he’s killed by Gaoh, a fellow Green Hell villager discovers his masks and takes up the mantle of a new “Tam Tam”.
  • Badass Bystander/Legacy Character: Tam Tam in the fifth game is a mere villager who discovered the revered hero Tam Tam was slain by Gaoh.
  • Baleful Polymorph: His ending in IV reveals that he has been cursed and now lives as his sister’s chimp, Paku-Paku — a punishment meted out over her losing the sacred Tanjil Stone.
  • The Big Guy: Tam Tam towers over everyone in the game, but either his fighting style or him being possessed by the mask causes him to walk and fight in an awkward "crab-like" crouching pose.
  • Breath Weapon: He can leap up and breathe fire in great exploding globules.
  • Confusion Fu: Tam Tam's stance keeps him low to the ground, he throws skulls, fireballs and totem poles from unusual angles and performs low-hitting pseudo-Hurricane Kicks by spinning on his fingertips.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Fights barefoot.
  • Hot-Blooded: One of his win quotes speaks for itself: "My boiling blood bubbles for battle!"
  • Human Sacrifice: His super in the 2019 game evokes this, and features the opponent being thrust skyward and shredded by a towering tribal totem whilst a group of his fellow masked tribesman leap around it manically.
  • Lost Tribe: At the time the series is set (1786+), the Spanish conquest had stripped away most of the defining features of Maya civilization. However, many Maya villages (like Green Hell) remained remote from Spanish colonial authority, and for the most part continued to manage their own affairs.
  • Machete Mayhem: He wields a giant-sized machete.
  • Man Bites Man: Since IV, he has had a horrific command-throw called the "Gaburu Gaburu" (which sounds uncomfortably similar to "gobble gobble"). He grabs the opponent, then thankfully turns his back to the camera and proceeds to bite chunks out of them. He then cackles as blood runs down his hands.
  • Mask Power: His mask is in some way magical, as its innate power is enough to reincarnate him when worn by another villager.
  • Mayincatec: Zigzagged -
    • Originally he's presented as an Inca, as he hails from South America (as seen on the map screen — his village “Green Hell” is located in the upper region of the continent). But he also presents aspects of the Maya (his fighting style is listed as “Maya-style” and his moves are written in the Aztec Nahuatl language. Conclusively, the original official arcade flyers released for the series’ debut unambiguously present him as an “Incan Warrior”.
    • In the 2019 game there has been a retcon, as the world-map now pinpoints his village of Green Hell as being in Mesoamerica, labelling the land “Maya” — so it appears he’s a Maya warrior after all.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: He's the greatest warrior and hero of his village, Green Hell. Hearing from the village elders that their sacred artefact is missing, he takes the responsibility of retrieving the stolen treasure, the mysterious jewel known as the "Palenke Stone".
  • Vocal Dissonance: For such a huge guy, his voice is screechy and high-pitched. Subverted in the 2019 game, where his voice is deep yet he is still able to belt out his signature high-pitched victory screech.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Sports only a collar and jewellery on his upper half.
  • Wild Man: He’s the series’ attempt to add a little diversity to the roster in his capacity as a tribal Mesoamerican warrior in a game dominated by Japanese characters.
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    Kyoshiro Senryo 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/11_kyoshiro.png
Weapon: Sewa Nyōbō note , a naginata
Voiced by: note 
A Kabuki actor who thinks Kabuki dancing is a Serious Business. The evil presences encountered throughout the series kept disturbing his performances, so he usually fights to preserve his dancing stage. He joins in defeating Mizuki, and then adopts the priestess Bizuki, whose body Mizuki had possessed, training her as a fellow Kabuki dancer.
  • Anime Hair: Look at it. Look at it. His huge, bouffant mane is based on traditional Kabuki wigs.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: He hops on one foot whilst in his idle pose, which must be quite tiring after a while, though it doesn't affect his fighting prowess — it's more of an aesthetic tick in line with his overall theatricality.
  • Blade on a Stick: Wields a naginata named "Caring Wife" — a weapon traditionally wielded by women.
  • Breath Weapon: In a nod to his highly theatrical, performance-based fighting style, one of his moves involves him breathing fire at his opponents.
  • Comically Cross-Eyed: He does this in the 2019 game as part of his Kabuki poses.
  • Dance Battler: He's an accomplished Kabuki actor, and uses his theatrical movement skills in battle.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: From III onwards — prior to that, he sported geta sandals.
  • Fighting Clown: Even with his new design from III onward, Kyoshiro not only evokes the traditional appearance of a clown but is also very comedic and jovial in combat, from his strange poses to the fact that he can summon mini tidal waves and giant frogs.
  • Very Large Ham: This is Kabuki after all, where expressions, gestures and speech-patterns are all highly stylised. It's self-acknowledged too, as seen when he defeats his palette-swapped counterpart in SS 1, he calls him a "ham".
  • Frog Ninja: He's able to summon a giant frog that comes up through the stage floor to savage the opponent, and although he isn't a ninja, this suits his overall weirdness and sense of theatre.
  • Kabuki Sounds: As expected from one who specialises in the art of Kabuki — Yoo~ooh!
  • Making a Splash: Kyoshiro has the ability to manifest small waves of water with a swipe of his naginata, which surge along the ground to hit low.
  • Meaningful Name: "Senryō" denotes a high salary refering to star actors. "Kyōshi" is translated as "a death marked by madness". Also, the name of his weapon, "Caring Wife", is a stock Kabuki role.
  • Overly Long Tongue: In the 2019 game, his intro animation shows him sticking out his long tongue, which fits with his overall bizarre nature.
  • Paper Fan of Doom: Kyoshiro's projectiles are paper fans inducted with fire.
  • Playing with Fire: Apart of the aforementioned paper fans, a variety of his moves burn the opponent — in some games, he even has a Breath Weapon. He can also do a flaming kick in which he uses his naginata to sling-shot himself at the opponent.
  • Race Fetish: He's got a penchant for busty white women, as seen in his bio where under the "ideal mate" section, he lists: "Western women with measurements Japanese couldn't begin to fathom." Strangely, he's never interacted flirtatiously with Charlotte, despite her fitting the bill.
  • Rapunzel Hair: As seen in his portrait — his huge Kabuki wig is floor-length.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In the first game and SSII, his sprite suggests something of a comedic, faintly ridiculous character. But come SSIII, he sports a far stronger look via a powerful, almost animalistic stance, wild leonine hair, and a sleeker costume.
  • Serious Business: His win-quote sums up how seriously he takes his art-form of choice; "(Kabuki is) a method of acting that is a matter of life or death."
  • Shout-Out: He most likely takes inspiration from Nemuri Kyoshiro, a sleepy-eyed samurai who travels around Japan.
  • Slide Attack: He can perform slide kicks when unarmed.
  • Spin Attack / Everything Is Better With Spinning: Certain moves and one of Kyoshiro's super moves involves him spinning really fast with his naginata outstretched in a tornado-like fashion.

    Wan-Fu 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/20_wanfu.png
Origin: Xi'an, Qing Empire Flag note 
Weapon (I / Sen): Zanniku Daibocho note , a dao
Weapon (II / 2019 reboot): Bokuniku Daisekichu note , a stone pillar
Weapon (VI): Bakuniku Daitekkyu note , a chuí
Voiced by: note 
A Chinese Warlord out to unify his nation. Despite this seemingly dictatorial idea, he is merely a good guy trying to make best of the situation, and protect his land, which leads him to fight off the evil forces threatening the Qing Empire.
  • Ass Kicks You: As seen during one of his standing kicks, one jumping kick, and one of his grabs.
  • Bad Ass Boast
    "Life is a dream. And it's Morning for you!"
  • BFS: His weapon in the first game was almost a Game-Breaker. At Point-blank range, his Power Slash dealt three hits that took off about half a full life meter and usually left you dizzy to boot. His Thunder Bomb could also be a One-Hit Kill if his Rage gauge was maxed out (a far from uncommon occurrence, see below).
  • Blue Blood: He's a general of the Qing Dynasty and his bio notes that he descends from the Han Imperial Family, the ancient Dynasty which ruled China from 206 BC to 220 AD.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Probably even more than Haohmaru.
  • Bowdlerise: His original bio in I noted that he "is wandering around the world searching for a "true Han" to defeat the "foreign race" empire (the Qing Empire) and restore the ethnic Han Empire" — a less altruistic mission than that which is noted in both later, and international materials (which simply mention him unifying China).
  • Chinese People: The series' sole Chinese rep until V. However, he actually represents something of an interesting anomaly in the fighting game genre, where the Chinese characters are almost always represented by either the acrobatic, Qi Pao-clad Anime Chinese Girl, the straight up Bruce Lee Clone, or the Old Master (at least 50 years old +) sporting a long beard. As a portly, boisterous warlord, he represents a refreshingly different approach.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Fights bare-footed in all appearances.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in the 2019 game as part of the first season of DLC characters, and wields an updated version of his stone pillar from II.
  • Hot-Blooded: At least in the first game, his Rage gauge fills up faster than anyone else's, and stays maxed out for the longest as well.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He usually acts like a jerkass and sometimes a Casanova Wannabe, but he has a good heart and fights for his people. He’s a good ally for Haohmaru's group.
  • Lightning Bruiser: For a big guy, he can cover the screen faster than some of the more slightly built characters.
  • Meaningful Name: Translates as "Tiger King".
  • No Fourth Wall: He is one of the few characters in the series to have a "joke" ending that breaks the fourth wall. Comically, he admits to the player that "there is no ending to [his] story".
  • Older Than They Look: He's noted as being 83 years old in the first game, though this was a translation error — the English section of the official site has a typo stating his year of birth as 1705, while in reality the 89th year of the Chinese Qing Dynasty (which started in 1644) is 1732, which means he's actually 56 years old.
  • Progressively Prettier: Zigzagged. In the first game, his physique can be described as flabby. In the second game, he sported an impressive six-pack. Come SSVI, his belly is more prominent than ever, and in the 2019 game, he's back to his ripped (though still heavy-set) look from the second game.
  • Take Over the World: Take Over China in his case, though for fairly gallant reasons.
  • Use Your Head: In II, he gains a move which involves repeatedly slamming his head into his stone pillar to fill his rage gauge at the cost of some of his Health.
  • Weapon of Choice: Notable for averting this; each game sees him using a different weapon.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: His primary costume is a simple loincloth.

    Gen-an Shiranui 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/08_genan.jpg
Origin: Onigami Island, Japan Flag 
Weapon: Azami note , a clawed gauntlet
Voiced by: note 
An..uh... goblin-like monster who claims to be 'The King of Demons' and does his best to do evil here and there, despite being quite inept at it. He has a hot, very much human-seeming wife named Azami, who bore him a lot of kids...WHO LOOK LIKE HIM. Eventually, due to Azami’s wishes, Gen-An stops fighting and settles down to the role of a family man/goblin.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: As he’s a "goblin", his skin is light green.
  • Ambiguously Related: With Mai Shiranui. Since SNK never stated whether they are actually related or not, it is unclear if Gen-An is an ancestor of Mai's or it's simply a coincidence between their surnames.
  • Anti-Villain: For all his boasts of being a Demon King, in the end, Gen-An is just a family man concerned with the wellbeing of his wife and goblin brood.
  • The Artifact / Early Installment Weirdness: According to the series' creator, Yasushi Adachi, the concept was originally to create an action game featuring various monsters. Ultimately it was felt that a fighting game with ninjas and samurai, which represented distinctly Japanese characters, would do better commercially than just monsters, so the concept changed accordingly and the only “survivor” of those original monsters was Gen-an.
  • Back from the Dead: Killed by Ayame after the first game, Gen-An was revived by Mizuki in the second to serve Ambrosia.
  • Bald of Evil: Supports his 'evil goblin' persona.
  • Breath Weapon: His poison breath, which in the first games makes the opponent dizzy, though they instantly fall down, so he can't continue with another attack.
  • The Cameo: Gen-An also appears as part of character endings in IV and V (Genjuro and Gaira, respectively), as part of a background in Samurai Shodown! (first of Neo Geo Pocket SS games and port of IV) and as one of the monsters in Akari Ichijou's super move in NeoGeo Battle Coliseum.
  • Cartoon Creature: In a series that debuted with a cast of fairly realistic human characters (some even based on real-life, historical figures), he stands out as a completely fantasy-based, goblinoid creature.
  • Dragon with an Agenda: Even after being revived and recruited by Ambrosia, Gen-An's plans to be the "Evil King" are intact.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones/Can Be Loved: Although he’s evil, Gen-An has a lovely wife who loves him, evil or not, and children who love him too — and he loves them all back as well, being a good husband and father.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: One of his moves and his eventual super involves spinning.
  • Evil Duo: With Earthquake, often paired by fans as the Choi and Chang of the series (they're seen together in Genjuro's IV and Gaira's V endings.)
  • Evil Laugh: An unsettling cackle, to be specific.
  • Expy:
    • Probably based on Western depictions of Goblins, as in Dungeons & Dragons.
    • Also his giant claw could be based on the one used by another terrifying character: Freddy Krueger.
  • Family Man: Despite being an evil minion, Gen-An is loyal to his own family (his wife and children.)
  • Friendly Rival: With Haohmaru — a mostly one-sided rivalry (best seen in his VI ending) and probably the reason why he imitates his poses in the games he appears in.
  • Gonk: One of the series' ugliest character by far, it’s not even clear just what this guy actually is. He held the 'ugliest' title for a long time, until Kusaregedo was introduced and took his crown.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: His claw is attached to a hidden chain, so he can shoot it out then pull opponents towards him. He was one of the first fighting game characters able to do this, along with Scorpion.
  • Green and Mean: He's a goblinoid demi-human, and has bright slime-green skin to boot.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: A self-proclaimed "Demon King" with a squeaky voice and in the end, too much of a Family Man attitude to be taken truly seriously as a force of evil.
  • Interspecies Romance: He's Ambiguously Human, but his wife Azami is much more typically human-looking, although she does sport large, pointed ears like he does.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: A pot of what appears to be dead people simmers away in the background of his stage.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • "Gen-an" translates as "phantom hermit", and a shiranui is an atmospheric ghost light.
    • His family all have sightly creepy names too. His wife Azami's name means "thistle" (a spiky plant) and his children's names are all lowly, underground-themed; Zakuro ("pomegranate" — a fruit associated with the underworld), Mukuro ("mole" — a burrowing animal) and Hedora (literally "gutter", the poor kid!).
  • Poisonous Person: His breath weapon, which stuns the opponent momentarily.
  • Rule of Cool: His big claw, named after his wife, Azami. Even Gen-An himself thinks it's very cool.
  • Shout-Out: His stage in the second game has a Xenomorph inside the giant pot where other "goblins" like Gen-An are cooking during the fight.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: He is constantly proclaiming himself 'The Demon King'.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Is it Genan, Gen An, Gen-an or Gen-An?
  • This Is a Drill: In I Gen-An's punch throw has him use his claw like a drill. In II this becomes his Desperation Move.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Gen-an's wife Azami is an attractive humanoid. It's even jokingly suggested he might be an ancestor of Mai Shiranui, though they really have no relation beyond their shared surname.
  • Wall Jump: Gained this ability in the second game.
  • Wolverine Claws: He wields a horrific looking clawed glove, which he dramatically snaps closed as his idle animation cycles.

    Shiro Tokisada Amakusa 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/13_amakusa.jpg
Weapon: Gadamā no Hōju note , a magic orb
Voiced by: note 
Based on the Christian rebel of the same name, he crossed the Despair Event Horizon when he was sentenced to death, and made a pact with Ambrosia as he was executed. Amakusa is then resurrected by Ambrosia using the body of Shinzo Hattori (one of Hanzo's sons). Amakusa's main plot involves him stealing the Palenke stone, which he intended to use to bring Ambrosia to the mortal world, though he is defeated by Haohmaru. Upon his resurrection in IV, his spirit splits into two halves: one good and one evil — Amakusa seeks his other half in order to regain his full power.
  • The Atoner: His good side, as explained in the intro above.
  • Back from the Dead: Twice.
  • Bishōnen: Fits the criteria very well and many players initially thought him to be an evil sorceress.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Does he EVER! So much that many who first encountered him thought he was a woman at first, due to his feminine features, talon-like fingernails, lipstick and elaborate kimono.
  • Enemy Without: Aku Amakusa
  • Energy Ball: His weapon — he wields an energy orb named Gadamā no Hōju in combat. He represents the first fighting game character to wield an orb-like weapon in combat — characters like Viola and Menat debuted at least eighteen years after he did.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Since IV split Amakusa into two entities ("good" Amakusa / Aku Amakusa), the previous games's identities have been retconned: I has the two personalities in one body, but split at the end. Aku Amakusa is the playable version in III, and IV has both of them - presumably, Aku Amakusa is killed, since in II the identity is the good one. The rest of his appearances (V Special / VI) are in dream match games, but the VI version is stated to be Aku Amakusa.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Is a bad guy in the first game but since then there has been a Split Personality issue where Aku Amakusa wants to continue his evil ways, but his default self wants to atone for his sins.
  • Hypocritical Humor: "My religion says all are equal. Peasant."
  • Impractically Fancy Outfit: Sports a voluminous, encumbering kimono that would make a light jog difficult, let along leaping about like he does.
  • Improbable Weapon User: In a series where most characters wield real-life, historic weaponry, his energy-ball weapon stands out as being completely fantasy-based.
  • Killed Off for Real: Both halves of Amakusa's full spirit meet their own respective ends, with Aku Amakusa being slain at the end of IV while the "good" Amakusa is struck down and killed by Mizuki near the end of II.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Amakusa is heavily implied to be involved in the summoning and possession of Shizuka Gozen in the 2019 game, as the post-credits scene shows his orb glowing red.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: No wonder many continue to be fooled — his laugh is high-pitched and haughty.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on the historical Amakusa Shiro.
  • Otherworldly and Sexually Ambiguous: He's a magic-using, magically-revived entity and his look is utterly feminine, sporting voluminous hair and clothing, as well as lipstick and eyeshadow.
  • Religious Bruiser: He's based on the real life Christian minister of the same name.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: His first reason for coming back from the dead, and the basis of his evil self.
  • Shout-Out: Though his portrayal bears similarities with the Amakusa in Makai Tensho, a tale in which Mori Sōiken resurrects other dead historical figures to overthrow the Shogunate, developers haven't confirmed if he was particularly based on him.
  • Sissy Villain: His main hobby is "make-up" and he acts in a camp, haughty manner but he's absolutely not to be underestimated and will readily disembowel you with the magical orb he carries around.
  • SNK Boss: In the first game at least. Less noticeable than other bosses since The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard in SS1 (effectively making every character a boss fight) and because of a Good Bad Bugs case that allowed the player to win the first round against him easily. Still, he remains a very cheap enemy, as his special moves have zero recovery time, can break out of combos, and can dizzy you quite easily.
  • Split Personality/Superpowered Evil Side: Aku Amakusa.
  • Voice of the Legion: Aku Amakusa again.
  • Wall Jump: Despite his voluminous kimono, he can leap from the arena walls, offering him greater reach.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown II

    Genjuro Kibagami 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/14_genjuro_0.png
Weapon: Meitō Baiōdoku note , a katana
Voiced by: note 
Haohmaru's true rival. A man of many vices, Genjuro is a killer for hire who takes the utmost pleasure in culling those he views as weak. He started out as a decent man, training alongside Haohmaru, but had a hunger for power which resulted in him failing to be chosen as the dojo's successor and even getting himself expelled. He also has a deep-seated hatred for Haohmaru, not just because he's his 'goody-goody' rival, but also because he looks like a man Genjuro killed in defence of his mother.
  • The Alcoholic: Just like his rival Haohmaru, Genjuro also enjoys a drink and pulls a cup of sake out of nowhere in his round-winning animation.
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Oh boy. Genjuro is very proud of his skills as a hitokiri and looks down on anyone who in his eyes look "weak".
  • Bi the Way: Mentioned at the official site for Samurai Shodown 64. His ending in Sen also shows him in a brothel with both a male and female prostitute.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Supplemental materials suggest that Genjuro regrets having to kill his mother bigtime — which explains his soft spot to Shiki, a dead-ringer for her.
  • Expy:
    • Played with, and also subverted as well; he is sometimes likened to a "Samurai Iori Yagami", though they're not related and despite the fact Genjuro was created first. SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos makes fun of this.
    Both at the same time: Vermin!... Die!
    • His backstory actually falls more in line with the connotation of him being the "Samurai Geese Howard", as both had very difficult childhoods and trained with the protagonist (or in Geese's case, the protagonist's adoptive father). Hilariously, Geese already has many samurai-esque influences in his design, and both characters have the same voice actor.
  • Freudian Excuse: He's the son of a prostitute and killed a client who was mistreating his mother. His mother then went loopy and tried to kill Genjuro himself and he ended up having to kill her in self-defense. No fuckin' wonder the dude is pissed off. And to twist the knife in the wound? Said client looked like Haohmaru. It's not Haohmaru's fault in the least, but still.
  • The Gambler: His stage, special moves (including tossing out cards) and win-poses in his debut game are all hanafuda note  references.
  • Handsome Devil: Complete with that trademark long red hair of his. What's more, developers wanted to make him a character with "adult appeal" who would leave a lasting impression on players.
  • Iconic Sequel Character: Since he supplanted Ukyo as Haohmaru's rival, Genjuro ends up as this. He's also made appearances outside of Samurai Shodown (SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos, where he appeared without Haohmaru, and NeoGeo Battle Coliseum) whereas Ukyo has not.
  • Jerkass: Easily one of the most unpleasant characters in the series, he hates absolutely everyone and everything and has no qualms whatsoever about killing all who dare cross his path.
  • Made of Iron: Genjuro has been shot/stabbed In the Back multiple times in his endings (in V by Sankuro, in 64-2 by a child of a woman that he killed, in 2019 by a random woman that wanted his seat in his gambling hangout), but he'll always recover and come back in the later chronological games (although the 2019 stabbing, which occurs before the first game, would force him to recuperate and not participate in Amakusa's plot, explaining his absence from the initial roster in that game). Apparently he willed himself to live through his hatred of Haohmaru and won't allow himself to die until he kills him personally.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kibagami" translates as "Fanged god" or "Divine fang", "Genjuro" to "apparition of the tenth son".
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Towards Haohmaru.
  • Parasol of Prettiness: He pulls out an umbrella for his match-winning animation, but unlike Shizumaru, his is merely for looks.
  • Psycho for Hire: Hitokiri to be more exact — literally "person-slasher", a swordsman employed to assassinate a given target.
  • The Rival: For Haohmaru.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Not exactly by choice, as noted above — his prostitute mother went crazy on him after he killed a client who was abusing her.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Inverted. Watsuki being a big-time fan, Genjuro's design was what inspired the design of pre-mummy Makoto Shishio.
    • Genjuro has a massive scar like Sagat's, except Genjuro's is on his back.
  • Social Darwinist: He excuses his killing by rationalizing that people who piss him off are stupid, and stupid people defile the world by their very existence; therefore, he does everyone a favour by killing them.
  • Spam Attack: His Hyakki Satsu (Hundred Demons Killer), which actually turns into a brutal gut-stabbing attack when any of the hits connect.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": "Genjuro" or "Genjyuro"? SNK seems to prefer the latter in more recent games. There's also the fully romanized version of his name as "Genjuurou" as well, which is rarely used.
  • Tall, Dark, and Handsome: At 6'0".
  • Three Strike Combo: His Sanren Satsu (Triple Killer), is aptly named, and can either work as a normal hit, or he can slash past/through his opponent with each strike. He uniquely shouts out "Inoshikacho" when he connects all three hits.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: In all appearances in the series, Genjuro will mostly be shown wearing his haori on his waist and nothing else on his torso, fully exposing his muscular build.
  • Will They or Won't They?: An interesting case happens in the RPG: Genjuro is the only character that attracts no extra companions, but Shippu no Reon is an obligatory companion in the storyline, so they have to be together. Surprisingly, this opens up Genjuro's selfish personality.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He would hit and likely kill a girl able to defend herself, but not a Neutral Female. His profile further backs this up by saying he can slaughter many people at once, not caring if they're male or female.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: In V, the reason he didn't cut down Sankuro at first sight was because he didn't want to kill the female gang-member shielding him.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Sports waist-length magenta coloured hair.

    Cham Cham 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/15_cham_cham.jpg
Origin: Green Hell Village, Maya Territory, Mesoamerica Flag note 
Weapon: Yok Mok Mook note , a boomerang
Helper: Paku Paku (Normal / Shura)
Voiced by: note 
Little sister of Tam Tam, who likes to act like a cat, playing in the trees and getting shocked by electric eels. She accidentally lost the Tanjil stone and in compensation, tried to retrieve it, accompanied by her pet chimpanzee Paku-Paku. In her ending, she finds out that Paku-Paku IS Tam Tam, cursed as a punishment for her letting the stone become lost in the first place.
  • Ass Kicks You: One of her aerial "kicks" is a butt-first hip check.
  • The Beast Master: Controls her pet monkey Paku-Paku, who can be summoned to attack for her, which includes throwing skulls, emitting fireballs, and a spinning kick attack.
  • Cat Girl: Sports cat ears and an actual tail. She's often compared with Felicia and even has her color scheme as an alt.
  • Cosplay: Mostly seen in her own Packinko Spin-Off Samurai Spirits Gaiden: Cham Cham, where Cham Cham can dress in modern outfits as well as cosplays, like Dragon Gal's Mui Mui and Fio Germi.
  • Cute Bruiser: Adorable, and fights in a far more feral manner than her fellow females.
  • Early Installment Character-Design Difference: With regard to her change of sprite in VI, compared to II and IV Special.
  • Genki Girl: Always in high spirits.
  • Jungle Princess: Her look — unlike her brother Tam Tam, her design takes no cues from the Mayincatec aesthetic.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: Arguably. Prior to her debut in the second game, the series' tone was fairly serious, gory, and grounded in a (heightened) sense of reality. When Cham-Cham debuted, she was designed so as to be far more cartoonish and whimsical than any of her series contemporaries, and her Cat Girl aesthetic borrows far more from fantasy-based anime than any real-world cultural cues — there's absolutely nothing Mesoamerican in her design, despite her being Tam Tam's sister.
  • Precision F-Strike: Though it could be due to wonky localization, the first word she said in her Arcade story is "Shit!". In a game from The '90s!
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: Her melee and projectile attacks employ her boomerang, which returns back into her hands even if she's being thrown.
  • Promoted to Playable: Paku Paku is playable in VI.
  • Secret Character: In the PlayStation port of IV, marketed as Samurai Shodown IV Special for a (Japan-only release), Cham Cham appears as an unlockable character, only being selectable in Versus Mode. Some of II’s portraits are reused for the game — here's a video of her appearance.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Probably based on Feral Kid from Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, but a female version of him.
    • Not to mention the green hair and the tiger-print clothes, which are similar to Lum.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Somewhat — she is the replacement for her older brother. She has been much more well-received though.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Green spiked Anime Hair in her case.
  • Weapon of Choice: Her Battle Boomerang.
  • Wild Child: So much so that she actually dresses like a jungle cat, and her movement patterns suggest an animal, not a human.

    Neinhalt Sieger 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/16_seiger.jpg
Origin: Königsberg, Kingdom of Prussia Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
Leader of the Prussian Red Lion Knights. He protects his country from Mizuki, and his soul happens to be one of the souls that Mizuki seeks in order to resurrect Ambrosia. He is, however, saved by Amakusa and later contributed in Mizuki's defeat. He returned home victorious and marries Princess Elizabeth, his liege's daughter.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Based on his Battlecry, developers nicknamed him "BAAAAH!!!"
  • Badass Baritone: Rather deep-voiced. Very badass.
  • Bald of Awesome
  • Bodyguard Crush / Loved I Not Honor More: His true love is the daughter of the Prussian king, Princess Elizabeth, who loves him back. They end up Happily Married in his ending.
  • Blue Blood: He's noted as being the commander of the Red Lion Knights and therefore in German-speaking Prussia, he would be addressed as Ritter, which is analogous to the English "Sir".
  • Gorgeous Gaijin: In a series primarily made up of Asian men, he's amongst the Token White guys, and sports the usual visual cues — a huge build, extreme height, chiseled facial features, and a Lantern Jaw of Justice. He's also stripped to the waist to boot.
  • Heroic Build: He's huge — notably 7'0", practically a giant — but maintains a pleasing, manly proportion.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: With Princess Elizabeth — par for the course when you’re 7 foot tall.
  • Hunk: As with Genjuro, Sieger was given attractive qualities in hopes of making him appeal more to players who appreciate a more manly aesthetic.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Is one of the biggest and most muscular characters amongst the cast, but is quite quick on his feet.
  • Love Freak: Possibly, based on his winquote, "Love is the best weapon in the world."
  • Meaningful Name: Loosely translates from German as "Unstoppable Victor".
  • Megaton Punch: Well, kind of hard not to when you pack a weapon like that.
  • Memetic Mutation: Before II was released, the new characters were teased via silhouettes. Gamest magazine jokingly filled these with odd drawings — Sieger's was a seated man holding an enormous fish. The Japanese fandom seemed to love it, since it's remembered even today.
  • Patriotic Fervor: He's undyingly loyal to the Prussian Crown.
  • Power Fist / Swiss Army Weapon: His gauntlet doesn't just punch, it shoots fire and sets his body alight.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: He's stripped to the waist in all appearances.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: He's got a rather nasty backbreaker.

    Nicotine Caffeine (Nikochin Kafūin) 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/17_nicotine.jpg
Origin: Hida Province, Japan Flag 
Weapon: a nameless shakujō note 
Voiced by: note 
An old priest, formerly the master of both Haohmaru and Genjuro. He expelled Genjuro due to his bloodlust, and keeps tabs on Haohmaru, especially when Mizuki starts targeting him. He retires from combat soon after Mizuki's defeat. Later in the 64 series, he is entrusted with Shiki's daughter Mikoto, raising her with help from Haohmaru and his grandson, Gaira.
  • Badass Preacher: He's the head priest of the Koka-in temple in Hida Province.
  • Cool Old Guy: Enters the fray with a wry smile and a twinkly gaze — nothing fazes him.
  • Interface Screw: One of his attacks will reverse your joystick controls for a brief time.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kafuin" translates as "Flower temple chanting", and "Nikochin" to "harmonious relation". It's also a pun on Nicotine and Caffeine, but it was carried overseas as the pun.
  • Miniature Senior Citizens: He's amongst the oldest characters in the series, and his sprite is also amongst the smallest at 4’5” — meaning he's often a hard target in battle.
  • Old Master: To both Haohmaru and Genjuro.
  • Paper Talisman: Using his o-fuda cards, he can summon a variety of mystical creatures.
  • Parental Substitute: He's one for Mikoto after Shiki's death, along with Haohmaru and Gaira.
  • Playing with Fire / Shock and Awe: With his cards, he is able to summon both a hawk-like shikigami entirely composed of electricity, and also a beast-like one entirely composed of fire.
  • Punny Name/Spell My Name with an "S": His real name is Nikochin Kafūin (花諷院 和仲), though due to being a witty pun on the English words "caffeine" and "nicotine", his name is usually written in katakana. His temple of Koka-in doesn't escape either, being a pun on "cocaine".
  • Put on a Bus: After his sole appearance in II and before his comeback in VI, Nicotine only appears as a cameo in all Gaira's endings since III and in Mikoto's backstory in the Distant Finale.
  • Shout-Out: Probably based on the monk Dakuan from Ninja Scroll.

    Mizuki Rashojin 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/18_mizuki.jpg
Weapon: Mi-gō no Tamagushi note , a gohei note 
Helper: Maju / Haon (RPG)
Voiced by: note 
A vengeful spirit who made a pact with Ambrosia, she is notable as one of the first female Final Bosses in fighting game history and causes worldwide disasters and calamities around the globe. Roughly 800 years after her pact, she was challenged by a priestess named Bizuki whose body she possessed and inhabits. Mizuki is eventually defeated, but returns in other games — centuries later, her soul still exists and she was absorbed into Verse and travels to the present day.
  • Arch-Enemy: It might not look like it, but Mizuki has somehow become one for Nakoruru, since she's the one responsible for eventually forcing her to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence, and the fact that she was amongst the souls absorbed into Verse and travelled to the future, which becomes a big factor as to why Nakoruru also travels to the future. It doesn't help that they're both priestesses — the possessed Miko Bizuki is Mizuki's most well-known look which carries over into other games.
  • Baleful Polymorph: One of her attacks will briefly turn you into a helpless animal, usually a pig.
  • Body Snatcher: Mizuki is a former famine victim who, upon her own violent death hundreds of years before the series is set, made a pact with the demon Ambrosia and ultimately possessed the shrine-maiden, Bizuki, which is her current form.
  • The Beast Master: With her beast Maju note  who, like Galford's wolf Poppy, can be commanded to attack the opponent.
  • Big Bad: Something of a first in fighting games — a female boss.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: The Samurai Shodown RPG explains that 800 years before Samurai Shodown II took place, a young Mizuki was abandoned by her parents during a massive famine. The little girl crossed the Despair Event Horizon and made a Deal with the Devil with Ambrosia, turning herself into an angry demon that spent years laying waste around the globe.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: After Mizuki was obliterated, her original body, Bizuki, was left intact. Kyoshiro, one of the people designated as one of the souls required by the Tanjil stone, took her under his wing and let her live a new life.
  • Femme Fatalons: She uses her long, claw-like fingernails to deliver multi-hitting slash attacks.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With: It's implied that Maju itself is a part of Ambrosia. However, Samurai Shodown 64 retcons it as a creation of Yuga.
  • He's Back: She's one of the souls contained within Verse and traveled with him to present day KOF, pursued by Nakoruru. With Verse defeated and the souls returned to their original bodies, Mizuki has the chance of spreading her terror into the present day.
  • I Am Not Shazam: Maju isn't the beast's true name, but rather a title that translates as "demon beast".
  • Interface Screw: One of her moves reverses your direction controls, which causes chaos for the player as she's tough enough to defeat as is.
  • Meaningful Name: Has the title of "Supreme leader deity", and Mizuki is a common name but here it's written as Seer.
  • Miko: Or more exactly, the woman whose body she stole was a miko, but she retains the typical red and white costume. Her weapon, a tamagushi, is one of the traditional miko tools used in religious services — although she uses hers to beat the hell out of her opponents.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: Usually when using her teleportation powers.
  • Nun Too Holy: She's an evil, demonic entity but dresses in the innocuous, saintly garb of a miko (the purest of the pure in Japanese culture and analogous to Christian nuns) — a dichotomy that only goes to enhance her terrifyingly corrupted nature.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Mizuki sports incredibly long, black hair that reaches down to the back of her knees. Par for the course for a woman originating in the Heian era, a period when Japanese women never cut their hair and floor-length (and longer) was the symbol of status and beauty.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Both her soul and host-body are really old — Mizuki is from the Heian era, 1000 years before Samurai Shodown II — but her body started to break down 700 years later and had to stay dormant. Some 100 years later (late Sengoku), she took over the body of Bizuki.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Sports bright red, demonic eyes.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Betrayed by her own family in death, she makes a pact with the demon Ambrosia, and lays waste to whomever gets in her way out of sheer anger and spite.
  • SNK Boss: She's very fast and her weapon can't be broken, for starters.
  • Voice of the Legion: Less distorted than the typical example, though.
  • Wall Jump: Making her even harder to target....

    Kuroko 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/19_kuroko.jpg
Origin: Kawachi Province, Japan Flag 
Weapons: Referee flags
A mysterious fighter that acts as the judge of the fights in a few of the games. He has four other brothers that dress identically to him, making them indistinguishable from each other. He is a powerful fighter, but rarely enters the arena. While he appears in the first game, he doesn’t reveal himself as a fighter until the second.
  • Bonus Boss: In II you will fight him either randomly or after fulfilling certain conditions. He's also the Mid Boss of III.
  • Combat Medic: Stated to be proficient in surgery and "resurrecting the dead", which is a nod to the early games where he and his brothers cart defeated fighters off in a tatami death-shroud to be.....resuscitated.
  • Demon Slaying: Tried to exorcise Mizuki with Nikochin a long time ago.
  • Ditto Fighter/Mirror Match: In III and Samurai Shodown! 2, he turns into the player's character, or a random one.
  • Improbable Weapon User: He uses red and white flags (used in martial arts competitions to denote when a player hits an opponent) as his weapons, and these cannot be destroyed or lost in battle. His stance is identical to that of Tung Fu Rue's from the Fatal Fury series (Special onward) and The King of Fighters series in II and VI.
  • Moveset Clone: His 64 moveset is almost identical to Rasetsu Hanzo's.
  • No Name Given: His name is obscured in the II credits. Recently it's been revealed that his real name is Sukihiro ("Kuroko" is just an alias).
  • Shout-Out:
    • Mostly to other SNK games. He is the embodiment of this trope — for example, in II he uses powers from early SNK fighting games like Art of Fighting and Fatal Fury. In VI, almost all his powers come from The King of Fighters series.
    • Although he appears as his own character in the series, he's based on real life kuroko, who are meant to be anonymous and "invisible" stage men in Japanese theatre — his "dislike" in his bio is noted as "actors who can't remember their lines". The colour black (kuro) in Kabuki and Noh theatres, signifies invisibility.
  • SNK Boss: He is strong and extremely fast. Plus in II, his weapon can't be broken.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown III

    Rimururu 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/17_rimururu.png
Origin: Kamuikotan, the Ainu Lands, Ezo Flag note 
Helper: Konru
Voiced by:note 

Nakoruru's adoptive little sister. She is also a priestess of the Ainu tribe and fights using an ice spirit named Konru/Konril, as well as her kodachi. At first, Nakoruru forbade her from fighting, but she managed to build up enough resolve to be acknowledged as capable enough by the time of the third game.


  • An Ice Person: Wields a kodachi, but also uses her companion ice-spirit in combat. This primarily manifests as spears of ice that pierce the opponent, as well as large chunks of ice used for crushing attacks.
  • Badass Native: Like her sister, she is a member of Hokkaidō's indigenous Ainu people, and her debut costume was a very realistic depiction of traditional Ainu women's national dress. Her ice-based powers reflect the Ainu's close relationship with the natural world, as well as her native Hokkaidō's bitingly cold polar winters.
  • Big Brother Worship: Rimururu idolizes her sister and wants to be like her every way possible.
  • Cheerful Child: Jolly, smiley and full of beans!
  • Close-Range Combatant: She has probably the shortest range in the entire series due to her petite stature and short kodachi, which is why using Konru effectively is an absolute must when playing her.
  • Clothing Damage: Often happens when Rimururu is killed.
  • Distress Ball: PS1 Warriors Rage hands her this one when Oboro captures her so she doesn't interfere with his plans. Nakoruru has to take action and urge the rest of the warriors to help rescue her.
  • Downloadable Content: She was the very first DLC character to drop for the 2019 reboot, and like many of the other characters, she sports an updated look (including a fur cape and longer hair) that still retains her classic silhouette.
  • Drop the Hammer: Her fatality consist in her smashing the opponent into the ground with a small iceberg on a stick.
  • Hime Cut: In her first appearances before her change of look in V.
  • Just a Kid: And she doesn't like being treated as such — she lists her greatest dislike as being treated like a child.
  • Kill the Cutie: Her age and cute looks don't save her in the slightest from the life-and-death brutality of combat.
  • Little Miss Badass: An adorable teenage girl whose cheerful facade belies her deadly combat skills.
  • Nature Spirit: Her companion spirit Konru manifests as a prism of ice which spins in the air just behind her, and all of her special moves are ice-based. Konru literally means "ice" in the Ainu language.
  • Not Blood Siblings: She’s Nakoruru’s adopted sister, though their bond isn't any less strong.
  • Panty Shot: In an unsettling fashion. If Rimururu is killed with a strong slash, her clothes will sometimes be torn off, exposing her underwear or body parts. In the Nakoruru ADV, Rimururu's underwear is shown in a swimming scene, where she sports a fundoshi.
  • Plucky Girl: Despite the terrifying, bloody circumstances she finds herself confronted by, she maintains an admiral level of pluckiness.
  • Promoted to Playable: Rimururu appeared in the first two games as part of Nakoruru's story, stages and endings, but it wasn't until III that she finally appears as a playable character.
  • Snow Means Cold: Rimururu's stages are all set in the village of Kamuikotan on Ezo during the winter. In the 2019 reboot, her stage is the same village location as her sister's, but it's set in the absolute depths of winter and is a snow-covered, icy variation — which is perfect for An Ice Person like her.
  • Spell My Name with an "S":
    • In some games, her name is mistranslated as Rimnerel.
    • Also, her ice spirit is sometimes called Konru as well Konril.
  • Tomboy: Much more energetic than her sister and sports a short, choppy hairdo and baggy shorts.
  • You Don't Look Like You: From a similar appearance to her sister, Rimururu received a complete change of look in the 64 series, as part of her Bust mode. This was later adopted as her definitive outfit for V and later games (V Special, VI, Sen and the 2019 reboot).

    Basara 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/18_basara.png
Origin: Tamba Province, Japan Flag 
Voiced by: note 
Fully titled Basara the Executioner (Kubikiri Basara). A restless spirit who was killed alongside his lover Kagaribi at the hands of "the demon" Zankuro Minazuki. He is brought back to the living world, remembering only his intense hate for "the demon". Convinced by an apparition of Kagaribi that he must "slay evil souls", he embarks on a vengeful killing spree. He is eventually sealed away in a stone pillar for eternity by Aku Amakusa.

  • Ax-Crazy: He's a mindless killer who doesn't discriminate among the victims he murders.
  • Ball of Light Transformation: Basara can use his ghostly powers to transform into a ball of spirit flame and back into humanoid form.
  • Confusion Fu: One of the cornerstones of his play-style is to spawn shadow clones of himself to fake-out the opponent.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in the 2019 game as part of the first season of DLC characters.
  • Fuuma Shuriken: Wields a giant shuriken attached to a length of chain.
  • Gorn: His fatality, where he drags the opponent into a hellish black pit before an enormous eruption of blood blasts their severed head back out.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Although Basara's powers are explained mainly through his ghost abilities, they also resemble powers usually identified with ninja. This is complemented by Basara's weaponry and costuming which are also associated with ninja — respectively his shuriken weapon and baggy pants, for example.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: His vengeful rampage has turned him into a bloodthirsty manslayer.
  • Hitodama Light: As a restless spirit, Basara can summon a hitodama called "Soul of Nue" that he uses as an attack, as well as to transform in and out of a hitodama himself.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: In his previous life, Basara lived in peace with his lover, Kagaribi, until the monstrous demonic swordsman Zankuro appeared on the scene and began slaughtering everyone. He blames "the demon" for Kagaribi's demise but, in Samurai Shodown V, it is revealed that Basara himself killed her.
  • Love Makes You Evil: All he wants is to be with his beloved Kagaribi again, so he kills people indiscriminately under the belief that he will be able to see her again.
  • Meaningful Name: The title of "Kubikiri" means "Executioner" and/or "Beheader". His name is written as "Sal tree / Japanese stewartia destroyer", but is pronounced as "unrestrained".
  • My God, What Have I Done?: In a plot twist revealed in V, it was Basara who killed Kagaribi in a delirium caused by Zankuro fatally wounding him.
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: The way his giant shuriken works — it spins off its chain at some points, but always returns.
  • Promoted to Playable: Kagaribi herself is playable in the Samurai Spirits OL mobile game.
  • Shout-Out: Considered by many as the Japanese version of The Crow.
  • Turns Red: Averted - Unlike other characters, whose palette slightly changes when their rage gauge is filled, Basara's doesn't change color.
  • The Undead: The series’ resident zombie character.
  • Undeathly Pallor: Depending on the game, Basara's skin can be pale or a sickening rotting flesh colour.
  • Unknown Rival: For Zankuro.
  • Vengeful Ghost: Wants nothing more than to see the one who killed him and his lover dead. After finding out it was he himself who killed Kagaribi, he turns on Zankuro. After he finds Zankuro dead, he turns on Amakusa, who is behind his resurrection.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Fights topless, combined with baggy ninja trousers.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Even after you die.
  • Youkai: A Yurei (幽霊), which are figures in Japanese folklore, analogous to Western legends of ghosts.

    Shizumaru Hisame 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/20_shizumaru.jpg
Weapons: Kirisame & Oharae no Magagami Shizumaru note , an oil-paper umbrella & wakizashi
Voiced by: note 
An amnesiac boy who was deemed a "demon" by fearful villagers. Following a traumatic past he trains and seeks advice from Haohmaru, who he views as a big brother figure. After learning about the great 'demon' Minazuki Zankuro, he travels with Haohmaru to defeat him.
  • Ambiguously Related: To Zankuro, due to the fact that they apparently share the surname Minazuki.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: He can't remember his very early childhood, and was adopted by a monk in infancy.
  • Apologetic Attacker: Some of his win-poses see him do a double take, mutter an apology and bow respectfully to his fallen opponent. Also, after performing his Tesshun Ougi, the poor boy will be horrified to see his rival dead and collapse in tears.
  • Cute Shotaro Boy: He's a polite, well-meaning young boy with keen sense of responsibility and exhibits a plucky, serious attitude towards his mission to warn others about the "demon" within him.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Because he was deemed a "demon" since childhood, he had to live and survive alone.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: As a young boy, his features are more androgynous than the rest of the male cast. See Shout-Out.
  • Flip-Flop of God: His relation to Zankuro. According to III's developers, they are not related, but someone is pulling their strings to have them together. However, in V his true name is revealed as "Jin / Yaiba Minazuki.note 
  • Kid Hero: One of the youngest characters, if not the youngest and in most of the games he appears in, he’s a tender 12-14 years old.
  • Kid Samurai: Certainly in terms of his age, and his role as a “little brother” figure to some of the older samurai men in the cast.
  • Meaningful Name: "Hisame" translates as "Scarlet Rain", although the developers made a pun with "Rain of Blood". "Shizu" translates as "Quiet".
  • Parasol of Pain: He wields an oil-paper parasol with a bladed edge, which acts as his primary weapon. He can whap the opponent with the tip, send it spinning towards them in the manner of an arcing fireball attack, and deadliest of all, spin it round rapidly to suck the opponent in and deliver a horrific multi-hitting rotor-blade style attack. He also wields a wakizashi.
  • Red Is Violent: In his main outfit and hair-highlights, the color red is predominant, and despite his tender look, he's as dangerous as anyone else in the roster.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: His "seppuku" animation in IV causes him to bow to his opponent and run like hell.
  • Ship Tease: He is often paired with Nakoruru's sister, Rimururu.
  • Shout-Out: He is mostly based on both Himura Kenshin and Kurama.
  • Shrinking Violet: A relatively rare male example, he's very sweet-natured, if a little melancholic.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: He's rumoured to be a 'demon' by his fellow villagers, and at first it was just that — an ugly rumour — but eventually he finds out that he does indeed have a demon bloodlust within him, similarly to Zankuro. This was alluded to in Shizumaru's Zetsumei Ougi/Overkill move in Samurai Shodown V Special. As he prepares to finish off the opponent, a hallucination of Zankuro appears behind him. He misses the killing blow and blacks out from the mental stress, but the phantom Zankuro slices the opponent clean in half, leaving Shizumaru horrified when he regains consciousness. See it at 6:07). However, he comes to accept his "demon" as a natural part of himself and makes peace with his past.
  • They Call Him "Sword": The monk who raised him as an orphan named Shizumaru after the inscription of the sword that was placed with the baby.
  • Troubled, but Cute: Sweeter than the standard, but with a VERY Dark and Troubled Past.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Shizumaru has dark red hair, but not like an actual red-head — his hair is ostensibly a bright red.

    Gaira Caffeine (Kafūin) 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/23_gaira.jpg
Origin: Hida Province, Japan Flag 
Weapon: Namu Amida Butsu, a giant ojuzu note 
Voiced by: note 
Nicotine's enormous, slow-witted grandson. After an argument with Nicotine, Gaira ran off from Koka-in temple to train, and witnessed Zankuro's killing spree, but was too afraid to stop him. After Amakusa and Zankuro are defeated for good, Gaira eventually returns in peace to the temple.
  • The Alcoholic: Although not shown in-game, he may be even more of an alcoholic than Haohmaru — he first tasted sake when he was six, his bio list his special skill as “holding his liquor”, and he was caught trying to give sake to a child (implied to be Mikoto).
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: He's a giant monk of the Koka-in Temple in Hida, and fights with his huge fists and a Buddhist rosary.
  • Did You Get a New Haircut?: Played for Laughs. In his V Special ending, all bald characters from previous games encourage him to cut all his hair off because being bald is manly and awesome.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Fights with his (gigantic) feet uncovered.
  • Dumb Muscle: An incredibly strong guy who sports a very impressive musculature for someone as young as 18 years old, but he's certainly not the smartest of the series’ characters.
  • Gentle Giant: From III-IV, he represented the "giant" character, until the appearance of Kusaregedo in V and the return of other large-sprite characters in VI.
  • The Giant: He's 7'5" — enormous for a Japanese man in the 1700s and only really possible due to medical disorders of the pituitary gland.
  • Hot-Blooded: Too much for his own good, as he's a certified troublemaker.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Namu Abi Dabi, a huge Buddhist rosary which he smashes into the opponent with deadly force — characters like Mina and Nakoruru can only take two or three heavy hits.
  • Meaningful Name / Ironic Name: Gaira translates as "lightweight body".
  • Mighty Glacier: He's positively enormous, and very slow with it.
  • No Social Skills: He's a pretty shoddy monk, and his people skills leave a lot to be desired.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": As with his grandfather, his last name would usually be written as "Kafūin", but the pun on "caffeine" carried over with him too.
  • Taken for Granite: His Fatality turns the enemy into stone. He then proceeds to shatter him/her.
  • Transatlantic Equivalent: Kim Ung Che is the version of Gaira from Fighters Swords, the Korean version of the third game, made for the South Korean market. The name is a direct Korean translation of “Gaira”. He's a wandering priest who is a former pupil of Nicotine. Kim Ung Che appears as a separate character in VI with the look of III-IV Gaira, but with a white outfit instead of Gaira's blue, and they can actually be pitched against each other in a Mirror Match.

    Zankuro Minazuki 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/24_zankura.jpg
Voiced by: note 
The third game's final boss. Trying his hardest to perfect his swordsmanship, he became a brutal killer, likened to a demon. He slaughtered people indiscriminately, until he came across a girl named Shiori and couldn't bring himself to kill her (she is actually revealed to be his daughter). Realizing what kind of man he has become, he calls it quits and retires into his hermitage, swearing only to raise his sword to fight a Worthy Opponent. In later games, he's revived and killed a few times (once by a lightning bolt of all things, but is evenutally Killed Off for Real by Sogetsu.
  • Anti-Villain: He was once a cold-blooded killer but he has since retired and won't kill people indiscriminately — yet he's still the Big Bad.
  • Badass Normal: Unlike Amakusa and Mizuki, Zankuro doesn't rely on sorcery or the dark powers of Ambrosia, being the first boss character to do so in the series. He wields a zanbatō which he uses to attack with amazing speed and strength. In his first boss appearance, he could easily defeat his foe in two to three strikes.
  • BFS: His zanbatō (a giant katana) is absolutely massive, standing about as tall as he is when it's planted in the ground.
  • Blood Knight: A brutal version — he was once a kind man who lived happily with his family. He eventually went blind with blood lust and started to slay others to compensate, unintentionally killing his wife in the process.
  • Hijacked by Ganon / Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: IV (subtitled AMAKUSA'S REVENGE for crying out loud) revolves around a new plan formulated by a re-reawakened Classic Villain, so you would think said classic villain would be the final boss. Nope, after defeating Aku Amakusa, the big stone obelisk in the background of the final stage explodes, Aku Amakusa gets sliced in half, and in walks a newly resurrected Zankuro, who in the third game—it should be noted—was just a normal human who was killed by lightning! Funnily enough, he's not the final battle of the game either. You have to beat a character-specific rival after beating him. It kind of makes sense, because Aku Amakusa's plan was to bring him back and direct his rampage for his own nefarious ends.
  • Large and in Charge: He's huge, standing 7'11", with gigantic arms and an intimidating stance.
  • Meaningful Name: Minazuki translates as "Moonless sky on the ninth sign of the Chinese calendar". Zankuro as "Crimson beheader son".
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Calls time on his killing spree after coming across a girl named Shiori, who he discovers (thankfully just in time) is his daughter. This causes him to rethink his approach and only fight worthy opponents.
  • Rated M for Manly: Definitely!
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: His fearful reputation started when a Karō (high-ranking samurai) and his minions kidnapped his child, Kakunoshin. After Zankuro found out, they were soon all dead - even his son.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: What he becomes after his death in the third game... which Amakusa tried to release.
  • SNK Boss: By IV, he had the greatest reach and base strength of all bosses, as well as great speed.
  • Sword Beam: His fatality in V consists of a super-powered slash that fires a green wave of death at his foe, totally obliterating him/her except for the lower parts of their feet.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: In III, where combos are restricted and doing them from behind is one of the few effective ways, he can't be comboed from behind, as he will magically block any second hit you might attempt to land on him, leading to some heavy retribution. From that same game, he has a True Final Boss round, where you must knock him down a third time, the cheating part being that even if you have not been knocked out before, you'll lose if he wins the round, and if you win by time out, you also lose the game. Finally in the fourth game, his Desperation Attack is a one hit kill if it catches you in the air.
  • True Final Boss: In III, as mentioned above. Subverted in IV, since he is the last boss unlocked, but a special regular match follows.
  • You Killed My Father: One of his victims on his many massacres was Sakon Kurokouchi, master of Ukyo and Yumeji.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown IV

    Kazuki Kazama 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/19_kazukikazama.png
Origin: Lower Wataribashi, Hizen Province, Japan Flag note 
Weapon: Suzaku note , a ninjatō
Weapon (as Enja Kazuki): Punch-based martial arts
Voiced by: note 
A ninja of the Kazama clan, younger brother of Sogetsu, and way too Hot-Blooded. He typically fights in defence of his sister, Hazuki, who frequently finds herself kidnapped at the hands of the series' various BigBads, or to subdue the fire demon Enja, who is eventually sealed within his Flaming Sword.
  • Anime Hair: Sports big, Dragon Ball-style red hair.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows
  • Curtains Match the Window: Red hair and red eyes.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: His Bust version revolves around a combination of a slide kick to trip his opponent, a hammer punch to slam them against a wall and a rising punch and kick combo to hit them afterwards. Unless you time it perfectly, Kazuki will nick his opponent with 2-3 hits, leaving him open as he continues to flail around in midair while the opponent recovers before he even starts descending. However, if timed perfectly, the opponent is caught in a full set of attacks, which Kazuki follows up by taking out his sword and slamming the opponent into the ground, doing up to half their health in a single easily-landed combo.
  • Downloadable Content: He returns to the series in the 2019 reboot as part of the first season of DLC characters.
  • Family Theme Naming: When looking at the Japanese characters of the Kazama siblings' names, they all have the kanji (月), which means moon. The first kanji of their names also matches their color scheme and elemental abilities, with Kazuki's being (火), which means flame.
  • Festival Episode: His character stage in the 2019 reboot, Sumidagawa, is new to the series and is based on the mother of all summer fireworks festivals in Tokyo, the Sumida River Fireworks Show, which is still held annually every July.
  • Fiery Redhead: Sports bright red hair, a fiery personality — his whole character is essentially fire incarnate.
  • Flaming Sword: His ninjatō is permanently inducted with fire, yet it's unclear if this is achieved through coating it in an accelerant, or whether via some ninja spell.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: He's wearing a friggin' RED costume and is actually on fire. Blending techniques clearly aren't his thing...
  • Hot-Blooded: In keeping with his fire-based theme.
  • Hunk: Of the fiery kind! In contrast to his softer, androgynous brother's looks.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: Hurt Hazuki in any way, and he'll crisp you.
  • Meaningful Name: The "Kazama" clan name translates as "Windy place", but is also a different way to write the "Fuuma" clan name. "Kazuki" translates as "Fire Month / Fire Moon".
  • Playing with Fire: The most overtly fire-based fighter in the series. He IS fire.
  • Red Is Violent: Kazuki has red clothes, hair and eyes.
  • Reverse Grip: Kazuki normally holds his sword this way.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Obviously, he's the Red Oni for Sogetsu's Blue Oni.
  • Say My Name: HAZUKIIII!!!
  • Sibling Yin-Yang
  • You Killed My Father: The last thing he had heard about his adoptive father was that he encountered a "mysterious puppet master", and in his 64 ending, he discovers that Yuga has already killed him.

    Sogetsu Kazama 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/26_sogetsu.jpg
Origin: Lower Wataribashi, Hizen Province, Japan Flag note 
Weapon: Seiryu note , a ninjatō note 
Weapon (as Suija Sogetsu): Kick-based martial arts
Voiced by: note 
Kazuki's Bishōnen big brother, and a lot more aloof and calm in manner. When their younger sister Hazuki gets kidnapped and Kazuki runs off to rescue her, Sogetsu was assigned with the mission to kill his brother for desertion. He doesn't go through with it, and fakes Kazuki's death so they may all live in peace. Inside his weapon is a water-demon named Suija, who is sealed in the same way as Enja is sealed in Kazuki's weapon.

  • Aloof Big Brother: To Kazuki and Hazuki.
  • Bishōnen
  • Family Theme Naming: When looking at the Japanese characters for the Kazama siblings' names, they all have the kanji (月), which means moon. The first kanji of their names also matches their color scheme and elemental abilities, with Sogetsu's being (蒼), which means blue.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy
  • Making a Splash: Unusually for fighting games, where augmenting elements are typically restricted to fire, wind and lightening, he fights with water-based powers.
  • Meaningful Name: The "Kazama" clan name translates as "Windy place", but is also a different way to write the "Fuuma" clan name. "Sogetsu" translates as "Azure Month / Azure Moon".
  • Ninja: Unlike Kazuki, he's not as overtly visible, as he can hide himself in water.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He's the Blue for Kazuki's Red.
  • Shonen Hair: Sports a flowing mane of watery blue hair.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang
  • Take a Third Option: Faking your rebellious little brother's death so he and your sister can run away is way more useful than either letting him go and being marked as a failure by your clan, or killing him and definitely losing both of your siblings.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: A darker blue than Ukyo, and also an implausible color for the time.
  • You Killed My Father: Just like Kazuki, Sogetsu's adoptive father was killed by Yuga. However, Sogetsu already knew, since he was trusted to kill Yuga.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown V

    Yoshitora Tokugawa 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/15_yoshitora.png
Voiced by: note 
Heir of the Tokugawa regime, he’s rebellious, party crazy and would rather hit on women than govern. He is called back to leadership when his master Gaoh pulls a coup and he is compelled to take him down, helped by Hanzo and Jubei. Finally realizing that With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility, Yoshitora took the position of Shogun. He is also responsible of arranging the tournament behind the sixth game.

  • Anime Hair: Wild even for this series, he sports hair like a huge, coiffed broom.
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: He's very cocky in his skills, which is only rivalled by his confidence in his looks.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Connecting with every single one of his special moves opens up access to his Yuchōka special, a screen-filling projectile that is so powerful it can win entire matches by itself. The problem? A few of the moves you need to unlock it are very situational and nigh-impossible to land in a real match. Fortunately, his overall move-set is considered well-rounded as it is, so unlocking the Final Sword is more for style points. In both Samurai Shodown VI and Samurai Shodown (2019) he has a super move that basically amounts to him comboing all his specials together, which also unlocks the move, but it still counts as awesome but impractical. In 6, it's because the move itself isn't the game buster it is in the other games. In the 2019 game, the super itself does so much damage that if you want to use the Final Sword at all, you'll want to open the round with the super, then you'll get basically one use of it (unless you're fighting the boss).
  • BFS: That huge zanbatō (giant katana) he carries on his lower back. It's only used for his One-Hit KO attack (see Awesome, but Impractical).
  • The Bus Came Back: After his last appearance in VI, Yoshitora is back to the series in the recent Samurai Shodown (2019).
  • The Casanova: In victory, he never leaves the battlefield without a lady (or three) in tow.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: He's definitely a skirt-chaser, but seems to respect and treat women well at the end of the day.
  • Comes Great Responsibility: The weight of having the Tokugawa surname lays heavily on his party-loving shoulders.
  • Every Japanese Sword Is a Katana: Averted, he also uses four wakizashi and a zanbatō (BFS).
  • Everyone Has Standards: Despite his womanizing ways, his bio lists him as despising alcohol.
  • Flower Motifs: All of his special moves are accompanied by bursts of floral energy corresponding to the flowers his girlfriends/weapons are named after — "Nadeshiko!"
  • The Hedonist: Like many an aristocrat, his main hobbies are partying and the pursuit of female admirers. Under the "likes" section of his bio, he lists "any kind of amusing diversion".
  • Hunk: He's definitely got the looks, build and charm.
  • King Incognito: He likes playing this, as the Tokugawa name is a fun-impeding burden he'd rather ditch sometimes.
  • Meaningful Name: The august family name Tokugawa means "River of Virtue", and his given name means "Pleasant Tiger", alluding to his charming, yet somewhat predatory sexual appetite.
  • Narcissist: He's dashingly handsome, but doesn't he just know it.
    Yoshitora: "Don't worry, you're not dead. I really am this good-looking."
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on the year the game occurs (1786), his character is loosely based on Tokugawa Ienari, the eleventh Tokugawa shogun who ruled a rather decadent era.
  • Rebel Prince: Although he's heir to the Shogunate, he's more interested in women and partying than politics, and runs away from his palace home, refusing to be the next ruler. It takes Gaoh starting a rebellion against his family to lure him back to governance.
  • Royal Blood: A few of the characters would be considered nobles in the Japanese sense, as the samurai class is analogous to the English knightly class, though Yoshitora is easily from the most august family, as he's heir to the Tokugawa Shogunate and his father is the de facto ruler of Japan.
  • Royal Harem: One of his defining characteristics is his insatiable sexual appetite, and he keeps a harem of six beautiful women of varying types (cute and sweet, demure and vampish) close to hand — all of whom he names his swords after.
  • Rule of Cool: Way too many swords to handle by any normal person, no matter how skilled.
  • Shout-Out: He was designed by Nobuhiro Watsuki of Rurouni Kenshin fame, and was made to be a tribute to Cho, from the multiple swords and broom hair... but not the Shogun heritage. Likewise, he's influenced by the popular perception of Keiji Maeda.
  • Simple, yet Opulent: He sports a golden-yellow yukata that on the surface appears quite simple, but in the 2019 game, on closer inspection, it is beautifully dyed, fading into lime green at the hem and embellished with beautiful embroidery on the lining and collar, befitting his royal status.
  • Swords Akimbo: Seven friggin' swords! Four short-swords, two regular-length swords, and one giant sword as long as he is tall. He's able to Dual Wield these blades at will and slice with them almost too fast to see. Shame he's a pretty mediocre character in the newer games.
  • Sword Beam: He can create a large vertical sword beam when using the Yoshitora zanbato.
  • Theme Naming: All his attacks are named after flowers, as are his swords, which are named for his girlfriends, who all sport one of the so-called "Geisha names" — that is, names (often florally inspired) that follow conventions and forms typical to the Geisha community.
  • Warrior Prince: He's the heir to the Tokugawa Shogunate and is also a highly competent swordsman.

    Mina Majikina 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/28_mina.jpg
Origin: Okinawa, Ryukyu Kingdom Flag note 
Helper: Chample
Voiced by: note 
A young Ryukyuan (Okinawan) girl blessed with a certain demon-hunting power. She is revered as a Kaminchu (literally "god person"), but ends up being shunned due to locals fearing her power, thus she ends up being unable to express emotions and secludes herself from others. Her only companion is a... creature...thing... named Chample, whom she met after she returned from a demon-hunting trip. After a demon levels her village, she sets out on a quest to destroy it...
  • Archer Archetype: Mina has incredible range, but is VERY vulnerable up close.
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: To a western audience, “Mina Majikina” sounds like she’s some sort of cartoon witch — as in, she’s “Magic Mina". However, “Majikina” is very much a real Okinawan surname, and she’s likely named after the scholar Anko Majikina, who also hailed from Okinawa.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Okinawans are viewed as somewhat exotic by mainland Japanese, perhaps explaining her white hair and tanned complexion.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Wears a mini kimono top that only really covers her breasts.
  • Clothing Damage: Considering Mina already isn't wearing all that much clothing to damage, this is hardly surprising as the other girls in the game all suffer torn or cut clothes when they are killed. The little Mina is wearing leads to almost, if not all her clothes being shredded when she is killed by strong slashes, causing her to die naked quite frequently.
  • Does Not Like Men: Is very apprehensive and edgy around males.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: The conclusion of her story amounts to this. In her ending, the seemingly adorable, innocuous Chample reverts back to his true Shisa form and Mina senses his energy to be akin to the one responsible for her village's destruction. Mina prepares to necessarily kill Chample and promises to follow him in death soon afterwards...
  • Downer Ending: Read the entry below, that's all you need to know.
  • Driven to Suicide: The very purpose of her mission is to kill the demon responsible for destroying her village, but having found out that it was Chample all along, she is necessarily compelled to kill him. Having realized she has killed her only friend, she commits suicide in what is undoubtedly one of most down-beat, nay depressing endings in the fighting game genre.
  • Emotionless Girl: She’s a morose, downbeat kind of girl — likely due to her village being mysteriously destroyed.
  • Glass Cannon: Despite her high damage output and extremely annoying screen controlling tactics, she can't take a hit at all. One or two mistakes on her part, which aren't that hard to make, and she'll be killed quickly.
  • Loners Are Freaks: Being born with strong spiritual powers, she was raised separately from her family, worshipped but also feared, and shunned because of her powers, having no friends.
  • Long-Range Fighter: Mina has full-screen range with her bow and easily the longest reach in the series.
  • Magical Girl Warrior: Mina is a Kaminchu (神人, "god person") — a type of priestess specialising in Ryukyuan magico-religious practices, usually those involving incorporeal beings. Her social role corresponds to that of a shaman, medium, or healer/guardian, as well as a demon-hunter, which is why she heads to Hinowa to stop Gaoh.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Majikina means "True mirror name". “Mina” is a broad-spectrum name encountered in many languages but in Japanese, in names like “Mina(ko)”, it typically means “Beauty” — which of course Mina is. Furthermore, as seen in her ending, an Ainu priestess confirms to her that in the Ainu tongue, her name means "to laugh", and that she hopes to see Mina live up to her namesake in the future.
    • "Chample" appears to be a muddled romanisation of Chanpurū note , which is a traditional Okinawan stir-fry — he's apparently named after the national dish. It's a word often used to refer to the culture of Okinawa itself, as it can be seen as a mix of Ryukyu, Chinese, Japanese and Korean culture.
    • Her bow is named after Chinzei Hachirō Tametomo, better known as Minamoto no Tametomo, a legendary samurai archer. Likewise, her fighting style — The Secret Way of the Drawn Crescent Moon — is named for a book written by author Kyokutei Bakin.
  • Mechanically Unusual Fighter: Her bow and arrow weapon sets her apart dramatically from the series’ other fighters, who are all armed with a variety of melee weapons which require directly engaging with the opponent. Mina’s bow demands a completely different approach, requiring fire-and-flight tactics to keep the opponent far out of their own attack range and her out of harms way, as up close, she’s incredibly vulnerable.
  • Mystical White Hair: A potential by-product of her demon-hunting powers, either that or she's an Heroic Albino.
  • Mukokuseki: Blue eyes?? White hair??
  • Non-Human Sidekick: She’s consistently accompanied by Chample, a seemingly Ridiculously Cute Critter who is in fact a Shisa (Okinawan: Shiisaa), a traditional Ryukyuan cultural artefact and decoration derived from Chinese guardian lions (often seen in similar pairs) resembling a cross between a lion and a dog from Okinawan mythology.
  • Panty Shot: Frequent, considering her wraparound skirt tends to flap about with the backdraft from her shots, and also when she jumps.
  • Promoted to Playable: Chample in the home ports of VI.
  • Shout-Out: She is likely named after revered Okinawan scholar, Anko Majikina.
  • Stripperiffic: Aside from the long skirt she ties around her waist, she's basically wearing a bikini.

    Liu Yunfei 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/29_yunfei.jpg
Origin: Chang'an, Tang Empire Flag note 
Weapon: Tensen Enkou note , a dàdāo
Voiced by: note 
An old warrior who can fly with the power of the wind. He was actually born in the year 740 A.D. during China's Tang Dynasty, and by 800 A.D., he was living in relative peace with his beloved wife. Desiring to gain more power, that same year he made a deal with a demon being calling himself "The Dark Emperor" (Kuraki-sumeragi) which caused him to go berserk. He killed his wife before finally being sealed inside a boulder by his eight students. He reenters the world a millennium later, after the evil entity leaves his body to possess Gaoh. He makes it his final mission to stop Gaoh by any means possible...
  • The Atoner: Having killed his own wife, due to the influence of an evil spirit he'd allowed to possess him, he attempts to atone for his past crimes.
  • Badass Teacher: He had to be a great master if it took eight of his own students to seal him away when he was Brainwashed and Crazy.
  • Blow You Away: One of the few wind-based fighters in the series.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: When he was under the devil's influence.
  • Deal with the Devil: Forged a deal with an evil spirit in an attempt to become stronger.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Due to his possession by an evil demon, his spirit was necessarily sealed by his students inside a boulder in the year 800 A.D. In the late 1700s, when the series is set, he is freed once more after the evil demon leaves his spirit to possess Gaoh.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: Under devil's influence he slaughtered his own wife.
  • Meaningful Name: Liu is a common Chinese surname. Yunfei translates as "Flying cloud".
  • Older Than They Look: He's physically 60 years old, but chronologically, since he was actually born during the Tang Dynasty, he's over 1000 years old.
  • Old Master: 'Old' being the operative word. He comes complete with flowing silver hair and a long beard.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Unfortunately, he redeems himself by allowing himself to become repossessed by the devil he originally struck a deal with, and having Goah kill him, which also destroys the devil's evil essence. After he is struck down, he is reunited with his wife (presumably in heaven).
  • Shout-Out: Wire Fu at large. Also, His name is composed of Shu's three sworn brothers from Romance of the Three Kingdoms: Liu Bei, Guan Yu and Zhang Fei.
  • Soul Power: His fatality allows him to extract the soul of the victim and cut it in half, killing him/her.
  • Wind Is Green: Sports a grass-green, typically Chinese outfit.
  • Wire Fu: Yunfei's fighting style is based on Chinese broadsword techniques. He takes most of his mannerisms from typical wuxia traits. The most notable of these is his ability to float through the air, an exaggerated approximation of qinggong or "lightness skills".

    Sankuro Yorozu 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/36_sankuro.jpg
Voiced by: note 
A lowly thug who's looking for an easy way to make a quick buck. He is the gang leader of a group of miscreants consisting of him, Goshichi, Fuyo and Ippachi — all three appear to assist him in attacks. His mission is to become the Lord of Hinowa without much effort, so he hires Genjuro Kibagami to dispatch Gaoh, though due to his own duplicity, Genjuro turns on him and he has to beat a hasty retreat, never to be seen again. Maybe he died...
  • Asshole Victim: No one missed him when Genjuro sent him packing.
  • Assist Character: His partners Goshichi, Fuyo, and Ippachi — who can all attack or stall the opponent.
  • Bad Boss: While his minions worship him, Sankuro doesn't think too highly of them. However, he's interested in recruiting Shizumaru.
  • Dirty Coward: Needs to cheat with assists to win a bout. And also, in his ending, he's too chicken to take on Genjuro face-to-face and only attempts to strike when his back is turned.
  • Drop the Hammer: His Weapon of Choice is a big wooden hammer.
  • Expy: His personality and some elements in his design were modelled after the characters Jagi and Amiba from Hokuto No Ken.
  • Funny Afro: Despite being Japanese, he sports a big, pouffy afro.
  • Human Traffickers: Want to know how despicable he can be? In pre-match dialogue with some of the female characters, such as Nakoruru, Charlotte or Rimururu, he claims he'll sell them at the slave-markets, which alongside his myriad of other negative qualities, only goes to emphasise how vile he actually is. He doesn't express the desire to sell Mina or Rera, but he claims he's looking forward to beating them up, particularly because they're female.
  • Jerkass: Literally has no redeeming features whatsoever and was seemingly designed to be as irritating as possible, both in character, and in terms of having him as an opponent.
  • Large Ham:
  • Meaningful Name: Very close to Zankuro, and probably done on purpose (see the Expy trope).
  • Mid Boss: Of V — he's one of the sub bosses of the game along with Yumeji.
  • Numerical Theme Naming: His own name is made of the kanji for three (San), nine (Kyu/Ku) and six (Roku/Ro). His associates are Goshichi (Five-Seven), Fuyo (Two-Four), and Ippachi (One-Eight). Sort of fitting that they all debut in Samurai Spirits Zero.
  • Reused Character Design: He comes across like a bad sprite-swap of Genjuro, as seen in his Palette Swap costume and some of his poses and moves. His animations are sub-par, and his assistants' animations are even worse, with barely any movement at all — Ippachi is basically a flat image that sails in to "grab" your feet. This lends Sankuro a tacked-on, lazy feeling in a game where this is usually not the case.
  • Shout-Out: Ippachi and Goshichi are very similar to Boyacky and Tonzura from Yatterman
  • Smug Snake: He thinks he's terribly clever in trying to manipulate Genjuro — but fails to realise he's dealing with a sadistic killer.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Goes so far to call his style 'The Strongest Style'. He fails to exhibit the charm that Dan Hibiki possesses though.
  • SNK Boss: Well, mid-boss. Fighting him is required and HELLISH in every way possible due to his interrupting minions, heavy damage, and frickin' pistol, which can outright kill you in one.
  • Too Spicy for Yog-Sothoth: Kusaregedo will eat anything... except this guy. He apparently doesn't taste too good, for some reason...
  • The Trickster: If summoning assists to a one-on-one fight is already unfair, Sankuro also has hidden bombs and even a revolver to finish his opponent.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: His yukata is slung off his shoulders like Genjuro's.

    Kusaregedo 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/30_kusaregedo.jpg
Origin: Sado Island, Sado Province, Japan Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
Fully titled Youkai Kusaregedo. A giant gaki who was once a kind man... except for his cannibalistic tendencies (caused by the Great Tenmei Famine), which cursed him into becoming the terrifying creature he is now. All he cares about eating, eating and more eating — and he likes eating humans... especially little girls. One day, he happens to pick up the scent of Rimururu and proceeds to chase her, only to be stopped by his own daughter Hakana, who pleaded him with to revert to the man he used to be. Kusaregedo manages to remember her... then proceeds to EAT her. Just horrific.
  • Autocannibalism: One of his victory poses is him taking a bite out of his own arm.
  • Bald of Evil: His giant red head is bald on top.
  • Child Eater: Squickly, his Trademark Favorite Food.
  • Composite Character: He seems to combine aspects of Earthquake and Shiranui Gen-An, who oddly enough, are missing from the game where he debuts. The biggest difference being that while they have some good qualities, he has none. Whatsoever.
  • Eldritch Location: His home-stage is set on the real-world Sado Island, but the stage's propping suggests an evil, haunted locale.
  • The Giant: Standing 14'11", he's easily the tallest character in the series.
  • Gonk: According to the game’s producer, he is based on the concept of "combining Earthquake and Gen-An into one". He's Gonkier than both of them indeed, and one of the most horrifying characters in fighting games in general, let alone his home-series.
  • Hulk Speak: In place of his biographical information are various disturbingly hilarious quips such as "I want some roashted childly wildies!"
  • I'm a Humanitarian: His transformation into a gluttonous youkai in the first place was punishment for cannibalism in his lifetime, though his backstory's great emphasis on his former kindness brings some doubt as to whether it was of his own volition. He'll eat all kinds of humans, children being his favorite, but for reasons unrelated to having standards on cannibalism, he finds Sankuro very un-tasty and refuses to eat him.
  • Jerkass: Definitely — literally has no redeeming features.
  • Karma Houdini: Despite being a murderous cannibal, he's never brought to justice. Maybe he got away scot-free, or if he was killed, we don't know who by — his ending just lists him as being 'never seen again'.
  • Meaningful Name: His name translates to "Rotting fiend".
  • Obviously Evil: A giant, terrifying ogre-like creature that eats children and has a horrific exposed bone as a weapon.
  • Villainous Glutton: His killing instinct is led by his insatiable appetite.
  • Was Once a Man: He was once a kind man living peacefully on Sado Island, however due to the Great Tenmei Famine, starvation led him to develop cannibalistic tendencies, which cursed him into becoming the terrifying creature he is now.
  • Youkai: Gaki (known as "Preta" in Sanskrit: प्रेत) and "Hungry Ghost" in other asian cultures), are a type of supernatural being described in Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism and Chinese and Vietnamese folk religion as undergoing suffering greater than that of humans, particularly an extreme level of hunger and thirst.

    Rera 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/31_rera.jpg
Weapon: Houtou Chichi-ushi note , a kodachi
Helper: Shikuru
Voiced by: note 
The story of her creation is an interesting one, unique in the series, and goes as follows; — during the early days of Samurai Shodown, the palette swap of Nakoruru was often seen with a naughty/malicious grin, instead of her usually innocent face. The intrigue built up until she started to become unique enough that when the Slash/Bust system was introduced, she was partnered with a wolf named Shikuru instead of Mamahaha. Fans originally thought her to be the Evil Twin of Nakoruru, but eventually, the character was fleshed out further by SNK and named Rera, thus becoming a character in her own right.
  • Anti Heroine: She loves nature as much as Nakoruru does, but is much more extreme in the way she's goes about protecting it.
  • Ascended Extra:
  • Big Damn Heroes: She took over Nakoruru's body twice, and both times it was to save both of their lives.
  • The Beast Master: She commands the wolf Shikuru — she can even ride him into combat.
  • Evil Twin: At first glance, though she's actually Nakoruru's Super-Powered Evil Side, who manifests in times of great peril.
  • Expy: Somewhat justified — though she's essentially just a Nakoruru clone with a few added techniques.
  • Grand Theft Me: A slightly necessary version, given that, in her view, Nakoruru is a tad too good sometimes.
  • Meaningful Name: "Rera" means "wind" in the Ainu language, and true to her name, she's one the series' fastest characters.
  • My Future Self and Me: Being a Dream Match Game, in VI you can choose Rera AND Purple Nakoruru and make them fight.
  • Purple Is Powerful: In the early days of the games, when she was "Purple Nakoruru" and had a kind of sadistic grin, which lent the impression that Nakoruru were more powerful and lethal in that palette. Reaffirmed in III when she controlled the wolf Shikuru.
  • The Stoic
  • Superpowered Evil Side: She's this for Nakoruru, but she's not actually evil, just a Well-Intentioned Extremist, who was sickened with Nakoruru's unwillingness to hurt people to achieve her goals.
  • Was Too Hard on Him: Eventually, she comes to understand that sometimes peaceful methods can be a viable option to solve problems, rather than just fighting, and thus she returned Nakoruru's body. Subsequently, Rera never possessed Nakoruru's body again.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: To Nakoruru in her opening sequences, before going ahead and possessing her.

    Rasetsumaru 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/32_rasetsumaru.jpg
Origin: Makai (the demon world) Flag 
Weapon: Yōtō: Torikabuto note , a blood-red katana
Voiced by: note 
A demon released from Makai when Amakusa made a deal with Ambrosia. He's exists purely to kill, reflecting his red blood blade. He's a failed clone of Haohmaru, created by Amakusa to be the perfect warrior. In his storyline he hates not only Haohmaru but also Amakusa for creating him and hunts both of them down.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Rasetsumaru has an unearthly purple skin-tone.
  • Ax-Crazy: Oh jeez... As with Kusaregedo, his "bio" is actually a collection of obsessive quotes with regards to his homicidal urges.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: His Zetsumei Ougi.
  • Bloody Murder: One of his special moves involves cutting himself in the chest area to max his POW gauge in exchange for losing a bit of his health.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Likes doing this to his victims.
  • Combat Sadomasochist: One of his specials involves cutting himself across the chest with his blade, causing him to bleed and take damage to fill up his rage gauge.
  • Enemy to All Living Things
  • Evil Knockoff: According to some sources, Rasetsumaru was Amakusa's failed attempt at creating his own minion modelled after Haohmaru.
  • Expy: Rasetsumaru is based on Haohmaru's Evil Knockoff from the Samurai Spirits: Haohmaru Jigokugyo manga., and his moveset is based on Bust/Rasetsu Haohmaru.
  • Licking the Blade
  • Meaningful Name: "Rasetsu" (The japanese term for "Rakshasa") was the name used for the alternate gameplay mode in Samurai Shodown 3-4.
  • Self-Harm: Can cut himself to instantly achieve POW state, but at the cost of 1/3 of his lifebar.
  • Slasher Smile
  • Superpowered Evil Side: Subverted, since he is NOT this but an Evil Knockoff of the real Haohmaru.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Notable in that his gameplay style actually revolves around the Rage mechanic. Normally, Rasetsumaru plays like a slightly nerfed, more combo-oriented version of Haohmaru. The latter part is very important, because he has THE best super in V and he can combo into it VERY easily, making him extremely deadly during POW state.

    Enja 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/33_enja.jpg
Origin: Makai (the demon world) Flag 
Weapon(s): Agni no Kusari note , a pair of broken handcuffs
Voiced by: note 
Enja is one of Liu Yunfei's disciples from 1,000 years ago, who succumbed to the powers of the demon world. He became a powerful elemental demon that was eventually sealed by Hazuki Kazama, who fused his spirit with Kazuki's sword.

    Suija 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/34_suija.jpg
Origin: Makai (the demon world) Flag 
Weapon(s): Rudra no Wa note , a pair of golden bracelets
Voiced by: note 
Enja's brother, and unlike his berserker of a brother, Suija is a much more composed person... with an ambition to become a God. Like Enja, he ends up being sealed into Sogetsu's weapon by Hazuki.

    Yumeji Kurokochi 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/35_yumeji.jpg
Voiced by: note 
The child of Ukyo's mentor. Apparently based on Oda Nobunaga's Uke Mori Ranmaru, who looked as equally feminine. Expelled from their dojo of origin, Yumeji ends up becoming Gaoh's right hand person. They are later defeated by Ukyo, but avoid execution. Yumeji later becomes a nun and is responsible for permanently killing Rasetsumaru.
  • Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: Sports waist-length hair pulled into a long pony-tail, and is a very serious person, with body issues that are probably gender-related
  • Ambiguous Gender: Yumeji is unique in the roster in terms of having no definite canon gender. The developers of the game, Yuki Enterprise, encouraged players to "believe whatever you believe Yumeji to be". To add to the confusion, Yumeji speaks in gender-neutral Japanese in both official their story and in-game text, and Yumeji's voice actor is known for voicing both genders. Due to the openness of the statement, players still argue over Yumeji's gender to this day. The gender-neutral pronoun "they/them" is therefore used here.
  • Criss-Cross Attack: Just like Ukyo, Yumeji has a Meteor Move where they move at lightning speed towards the opponent, passing through and behind him or her before sheathing their sword. A split second later, the opponent is sliced by various slashes and collapses to the ground.
  • Ditto Fighter: They are the "Tsungxpert" variant. At their debut, Yumeji's speciality move is the ability to morph into the other fighters and use their moves at will, à la Twelve of Street Fighter fame.
  • The Dragon: To Gaoh — exemplified in-game where they act as the Sub Boss in V.
  • Heir to the Dojo: For a while, though they were expelled for unknown reasons.
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: Just like Yumeji's father and Ukyo, sharing some moves with the latter.
  • Ill Boy: Yumeji was apparently kicked out of the dojo due to some sort of ambiguous illness — though it's heavily implied that the "illness" was simply being either trans or female.
  • Important Haircut: When defeated by Ukyo, Yumeji begged for death, but Ukyo just cut their ponytail off and ordered them to go home.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kurokuchi" translates as "The black river within" , and "Yumeji" as "Dreaming".
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: As stated, with their Ambiguous Gender and being the right hand person of a conquering warlord, Yumeji is based on the young page who served Oda Nobunaga, Mori Ranmaru.
  • Nun Too Holy: Instead of going back home after Ukyo defeats them and orders them to do as such, Yumeji becomes a nun — but still somehow manages to kill Rasetsumaru at some point.
  • Sub Boss: Of V — they are always encountered before the final assault on Gaoh.
  • Tomboyish Ponytail: Well, until Ukyo cuts it off.
  • Yes-Man: Yumeji is pretty much this for Gaoh.

    Gaoh Kyogoku Hinowa no Kami 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/37_gaoh6.jpg
Gaoh
Demon Gaoh 
Origin: Hinowa Province, Japan Flag 
Voiced by: note 
Based on the Demon King Oda Nobunaga himself, Gaoh is a general of Tokugawa who became sickened with how the shogunate, not to mention the heir Yoshitora, whom he mentored, was becoming disgustingly slack and undisciplined. Feeling it his responsibility to set the tone straight, Gaoh led a rebellion, assisted by Yumeji. Along the way, he was possessed by the same demon that made a deal with Yunfei. Yunfei later hunts him down and helps free him of the demon's influence and banishes it. He is later beaten by Yoshitora and in death, he is finally able to see Yoshitora reassuringly maturing.

In the sixth dream match game, there's a version of him called 'Gaoh, Oppressor of Demon World' or 'Demon Gaoh', which is a continuation of his and Kuraki Sumeragi's stories after they are defeated and banished to the Demon World by Yunfei in the previous game. Once there, he conquers the Demon World and rules it as the Demon King, with his next objective being to conquer "the world above."
  • Ambiguously Brown: As Demon Gaoh.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: His status in the 6th game. In the default game, Gaoh didn't end up becoming a demon completely, as Yunfei's interference restored his humanity enough to face Yoshitora as a human. In the dream match, Yunfei's exorcism also sent him to the Demon World and Gaoh started to relish his demonic power.
  • Animated Armor: Dark Emperor's "true" form is a ghostly living suit of armour. [1].
  • Badass Moustache: Since he's based on Oda Nobunaga, he had to have the moustache.
  • Big Bad: With the Dark Emperor demon as the Man Behind the Man and Greater-Scope Villain.
  • Blade on a Stick: To be more precise, 3 blades on a stick! It also magically grows in size when Gaoh transforms into the Dark Emperor!
  • Blue Blood: He's the feudal lord or Daimyo (literally “large private land”) of Hinowa Province, with a title analogous to a British Earl or Duke and is therefore amongst the highest-ranking Japanese characters in the series — only Yoshitora really exceeds him in terms of power and status.
  • The Cameo: In the 2019 game's story mode intro scene, you can see Gaoh fighting in background.
  • Dark Is Evil / Red and Black and Evil All Over: As Demon Gaoh.
  • Demonic Possession / Fusion Dance: As Demon Gaoh.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: His intro image in the dream match, whereas he beckons the player to engage with him while simultaneously stomping on Satan's head.
  • Killed Off for Real: He is defeated and executed by Yoshitora for his betrayal of the shogunate.
  • Meaningful Name: He’s titled “Rebellious country Hinowa's protector / governor". His given name, Gaoh, translates as "The thriving one", and is very close to a certain Raoh that shares the same voice actor.
  • Noble Demon: A villain that nonetheless has the best interests of his nation at heart. And he's not amused with some of the more obviously evil characters in the game, like Kusaregedo.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: As stated, he's based on Oda Nobunaga, although his demonic status was at first unwilling, and his mission was not to conquer Japan, but to reform the Shogunate, which he saw as corrupt, and make Yoshitora a responsible person in the process. The What If? story in the sixth game was a take on the popular concept of 'Nobunaga is 100% demon and wants to conquer the world'
  • One-Winged Angel: The Dark Emperor/Kuraki-Sumeragi
  • SNK Boss: One of the toughest out there — aside from being able to transform into his demonic form, his jumonji spear gives him one of the longest reaches in the games, both on ground and in the air. He is also one of the stronger characters, dealing greater damage even if his hits are blocked.
  • Shout-Out: Gaoh is one enormous shoutout to Fist of the North Star, from being voiced by Kenji "Raoh" Utsumi to shouting such things as "Tenha Kassatsu!" and "Hikanu!", two famous lines of Kenshiro and Souther respectively.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He saw the Shogunate growing corrupt, and his student, the heir Yoshitora, as being a slacker that had almost no interest in ruling. For that, he commanded a rebellion to either reform the state or make Yoshitora take the responsibility befitting his position.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown VI

    Andrew 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/38_andrew.jpg
Origin: Virginia, United States Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
He is portrayed as an American soldier who goes to Japan to stop a new menace to his relatively young country. In his ending, he befriends Yoshitora. He is a serious and dedicated individual, always thinking about his duty to his country above all else.


  • Bayonet Ya: Using the blade of his bayonet, he can slash his opponents from afar and keep them at a distance with his projectile attacks.
  • Bifurcated Weapon: He uses a musket with a bayonet attached, which offers him both mid and long-range reach.
  • Bling of War: Sports bright red military dress complete with epaulets, a black sash and white gloves.
  • Eagleland: Variant 1 — a heroic leader of men with a just cause.
  • Historical-Domain Character: The series' take on the the US's seventh president.
  • Megane: Sports glasses which he removes prior to the fight.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Based on Andrew Jackson, an American soldier and statesman who served as the seventh President of the United States from 1829 to 1837. Before being elected to the presidency, Jackson gained fame as a general in the United States Army and served in both houses of Congress.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Takes part in the events of the 6th game to protect the fledgling United States from demonic powers.
  • The Pioneer: Source materials note the he is the son of an ambitious English merchant who sought a new life in the colonies.
  • Recycled In SPACE: Andrew Jackson as A WHITE-HAIRED PRETTYBOY WITH GLASSES.
  • Ship Tease: Fans tends to pair him with Iroha, the new female character in the 6th game.
  • Stereotype Flip: In dramatic contrast to the loud, brash, energetic manner in which Americans are typically presented in this series (and most fighting games in general), Andrew is presented as a quiet, stoic, bookish young man who enjoys taking tea and whose complex is his lack of success in talking to women. The stereotype is further turned on its head via his in-series buddy and Japanese counterpart, Yoshitora, who is depicted as a louche, cocky, womanising layabout, which is in complete contrast to the usually stoic, humble Japanese archetype — they've essentially switched roles.
  • Stoic Spectacles
  • The Glasses Come Off: Takes his glasses off before a match starts.
  • White Anglo-Saxon Protestant: His father is English (so he's almost a proto-WASP given he's first generation American), and he exhibits the typically reserved, stoic personality.
  • The White House: His stage is set at the White House during its construction, which (sort of) fits into the series' overall timescale, as the build started in 1792.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: One of his pre-battle lines has Andrew feeling reluctant on fighting a female opponent.

    Iroha 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/39_iroha.jpg
Origin: Urushiyama, Mutsu Province, Japan Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
A crane who is able to transform herself into a Japanese maid. She serves her master and sees her duty to him/her as the most important aspect of her life. She often bows and speaks to the player directly before and after her fights and the game's producers have confirmed her master is indeed the player him/herself. Iroha is an obedient and cheerful maiden. She deeply cares for her master, trying her hardest to stay in her human form whilst in front of him/her. Despite debuting only in Dream Match, Iroha went on to star in many Meido based spinoff games.

  • Animorphism: Seamlessly shifts between crane and human forms.
  • Battle Strip/Full-Frontal Assault: One of her super moves (which happens in shadow) involves her stripping off her clothes, resulting in her silhouette appearing nude, then beating the crap out of her opponent with her bare hands before morphing into her crane form momentarily to cause some more damage, then morphing back to her human form, still nude, to lay the final blow.
    • Distracted by the Sexy: ...and during that whole sequence, her opponent is just standing there letting her beat the crap out of him/her.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Iroha was introduced in one of the less bloody entries in the series and promptly disappears in the following game, so she was never a victim of the most brutal finishers the series has seen.
  • Dating Sim: Her Spin-Off games by SNK are usually this, having two game series for mobile (Maid by Iroha and Koi by Iroha), as well as appearing in various Days of Memories games.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: She's not fond of firearms or ranged weapons, as seen in her interactions with Andrew and Mina.
  • Dual Wielding: She fights with a pair of butterfly swords.
  • Environmental Symbolism: All four of the new characters in VI came with an applicable stage. Iroha's stage is set in her snow-covered home of Urushiyama, and features a watermill and a riverbank where multiple black and white cranes flock together. Her accompanying Leitmotif (a melancholic ballad) is unusual in that it features full lyrics.
  • Foil: In Koi by Iroha has one in Tsunami, another Stripperiffic Ninja Maid who's The Rival.
  • Freakiness Shame: In what is a clear reference to the fable she is based on, during the super where she transforms into her crane form (albeit screened by a shoji), she begs the player not to look...no matter what.
  • Impossible Hourglass Figure: Iroha has a curvaceous figure complemented by very large breasts and fairly wide hips measuring at B91 W59 H85
  • Meaningful Name: Her namesake are the first syllables from the Heian poem of the same name, which is a pangram used until the Meiji era for learning the hiragana syllabary — a cultural translation would be "ABC".
  • Meido: At first, she was designed to be a mostly nude character, though eventually her image changed to a "graceful crane" and "Asian wife" motif — hence her skills at housework.
  • Morphic Resonance: Her maid's apron is design so as to resemble a crane's wings.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Her default costume, definitely. She even breaks the fourth wall to serve you at the end!
  • No Fourth Wall: Her "master" is YOU, and she speaks to the player as such.
  • Ninja Maid: Probably the most literal example ever. Her clothes look like a cross between a kunoichi's clothing (or lack thereof) and the stereotypical French Maid Outfit.
  • Shapeshifting Lover: She tries her best to maintain her human form for her master when in front of him/her.
  • Shotoclone: She's one of the basic and easier to use characters, and has special moves that mirror those of Ryu/Ken with her own equivalents of Hadouken, Dragon Uppercut, and Hurricane Kick.
  • Shout-Out: Iroha's entire character is based on an old story called The Grateful Crane Wife, which is linked to the Chinzo Temple in Urushiyama, her hometown. In the story, a man named Kinzo helps to rescue a crane. The grateful crane later thanks Kinzo by turning into a woman and becoming his wife. She makes valuable cloth for him to sell at the market, on the condition that he does not watch her as she makes it. Eventually, curiosity gets the better of Kinzo and he sneaks a glimpse into the room she works in. He is shocked to see a crane producing the cloth and because he has broken his promise, the crane ascends to heaven. Kinzo is ashamed and becomes a priest, praying for the crane everyday thereafter. During one of Iroha's special attacks, she hides behind a shoji while saying "Please don't look, no matter what", referencing a scene from the story.
  • Spin Attack: She has two — one where she can twirl herself toward her opponent, slicing them with her swords, and another as a rolling attack that can also send her spinning upwards to counter aerial attacks.
  • Stripperiffic: Skimpy kunoichi-inspired French maid wardrobe that reveals her cleavage and even some side-boob? Check. Wide hips on show? Check. Toeless thigh-highs? Double check. She was literally maid for Fanservice.
  • Suplex Finisher: If she is rendered weaponless while performing her Crane Dance move on her opponent, she'll instead finish her full-frontal assault by seductively approaching her victim only to sucker them into an unexpectedly brutal suplex.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Kind, domestic, submissive but not exactly weak, obedient to her master, feminine yet very capable of holding her own in battle. Her true form as that of crane helps too. Pretty much the only non-characteristic trait she has is her revealing wardrobe.
  • Youkai: Yes, the beautiful Iroha counts as such. Whilst she presents as human, and is undoubtedly a pure, true-hearted character, she's absolutely not human but rather an entity known as a Tsuru Nyōbō ("Crane Wife"), which are the subject of many Japanese folktales, including The Grateful Crane Wife detailed above.

    Sugoroku Matsuribayashi 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/40_sugoroku.jpg
Voiced by: note 
A plump, jolly man who really enjoys festivals (Matsuri) and having fun. His character design and mannerisms are based on the Naked Festival that occurs annually in Japan. He was designed to follow a festival motif after the game designers decided on creating a "lame but cool" character.
  • Action Dad: Kicks butt and has a daughter named Koma.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: He may look goofy, but he isn't regarded as the best fireworks technician in the world for nothing! This guy'll straight-up knock you out!
  • BFG: Wields a huge cannon used for shooting Fireworks!!
  • Big Beautiful Man: Muscular, shapely, nice fat ass, and wears nothing but a fundoshi to cover his modesty.
  • Big Fun: He's extremely cheery.
  • The Cutie: The guy's a genuine sweet, lovable Nice Guy who fights so that everyone will be happy and have fun. Then there's that smile of his...
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: His arcade run in a nutshell — thinking that the foreigners would like to participate in the festival, he decides to enter the brawl. He's also hoping to have a good time while he's at it!
  • Family Man: Has a wife and child back home. His wife accompanies him before the fight starts, and his daughter (alongside the wife and dog) will pose with him if he's victorious. His family even assists him during battles!
  • Fun Personified: Definitely. This is a man who always carries a smile on his face, goes to every festival he can and wants everybody in the world to have fun!
  • Happily Married: To his beloved Karuta.
  • Homage: The entirety of his character is inspired by the attendees of the Hadaka Matsuri, an event in Japan held at least once every year. Participants, usually male, wear virtually no clothing (normally just a thong fundoshi but occasionally nothing at all) while celebrating the harmony of a fruitful harvest and fertility.
  • Lethal Joke Character: His design was intended to be this way, according to the developers. Word of God even claims he's supposed to be a "Lame, but cool character."
  • Life of the Party: In his capacity as a festival aficionado.
  • Meaningful Name: A "Matsuri bayashi" is the musical accompaniment to the Japanese festivals. A ''sugoroku is a typical Japanese board game.
  • Mr. Fanservice: His default costume leaves very little to the imagination. His design and mannerisms also have a stong Bara Genre vibe.
  • Shoulder Cannon / Improbable Weapon User: In a series with some pretty out-there weapons, his fireworks cannon might take the cake. As a large, heavy object, he can smash the opponent with it, spin it like a top for a multi-hit, mount it to jet-propel himself into the opponent and, of course, blast the enemy away (fireworks may be involved). His super involves him calling on a group of shrine-carrying festival-goers to trample the opponent — hilariously weird.
  • Stout Strength: He's a plump little cherub of a man, but has good stamina in-game.
  • Theme Naming: His whole family is named after things related to the new year's celebration: his wife Karuta note , his daughter Koma note , his father Kadomatsu note , his mother Kine note , his grandfather Hatsuyume note  and his grandmother Hagoita note . His dog Pochi is the one who doesn't clearly fit with the motif.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: His wife is taller than he is, as he's only 5'1".
  • Unskilled, but Strong: He's a fighting fireworks technician!
  • Unusual Weapon Mounting: Carrying an active fireworks cannon at all, let alone carrying one into combat, is unadvisable for obvious reasons.

    Ocha-Maro Karakuri 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/41_ochamaru.jpg
Origin: North of Tsuchimikado Street, east of Nishinotouin Street, Heian-kyō, Yamashiro Province, Japan Flag note 
Voiced by: note 
During the Heian period, a famous onmyōji learned about the existence of the demon world and foresaw the dangers. He created an army of wooden karakuri puppets to combat said dangers after his death. A century before the events depicted in the game, his fellow puppets are all destroyed by Mizuki when they attempt to seal her. He is the only survivor, and when he reawakens, he departs to fulfil his duty as a warrior who fights demons.
  • The Cameo: Apart from VI, Ocha-Maro also appears as a Counter Card for SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters DS and in Maid by Iroha game series.
  • Creepy Doll: Despite being one of the good guys, Ocha-Maro is more than a little unsettling, especially for players completely unfamiliar with the concept and appearance of karakuri.
  • Dance Battler: Fights with the Kagura dance.
  • Deadly Disc: The giant cogwheel concealed within his under-carriage can be spun rapidly at opponents to deliver considerable damage.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: His sole purpose is to battle demonic forces, and he never hesitates to complete his pre-programmed mission to do so.
  • Lethal Joke Character: Once developers decided that they wanted to add an odd-ball character to the cast, the concept of an endlessly powered karakuri emerged, making Ocha-Maro one of the weirdest if not the weirdest fighting game characters in existence. Despite this, in the right hands, he's a deadly opponent for the very reason that his style is so strange and unpredictable.
  • Meaningful Name: Translates as "Karakuri tea boy", a reference to the typical Japanese tea-serving clockwork robot.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Due to Ocha-Maro's age, a handful of Japanese fans believe that he was created by Abe no Seimei.
  • Onmyōdō: Ocha-Maro was built by a famous onmyōji, the only person who it shows respect to.
  • Puppet Shows: Karakuri puppets (karakuri ningyō) are traditional Japanese mechanized puppets or automata. The dolls' gestures provide a form of entertainment and the word karakuri means "mechanisms" or "trick". Ocha-Maro is based on a zashiki karakuri — a puppet designed to serve tea, which is referenced in his name, literally "tea-boy". His unique stage in VI is set in the Tenkaku-za puppet theatre, and features multiple singing puppets who look like smaller versions of him — eerie.
  • Robot: Karakuri puppets were one of the first automata in history, and basically the predecessors of modern robots. Ocha-Maro is the second Karakuri in the series, the first being the Karakuri version of 64's Yagyu Hanma.

Debuting in Samurai Shodown (2019)

    Darli Dagger 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/15_darlidagger.png
Origin: Unknown (somewhere at sea) note 
Voiced by: note 
A shipwright who has mastered the use of various tools. She washed ashore on an island at an early age, where carpenters taught her how to make things and pirates taught her how to protect herself and survive. She is currently building a ship said to be unsinkable with her comrades at the island’s workshop.

  • Affirmative Action Girl: According to game developer Nobuyuki Kuroki, giving her unique weapon to a muscular male character didn’t feel distinct enough, which is why they decided to make the character a powerful and strong-willed female with African roots, a region not usually represented in the series.
  • Amazonian Beauty: In contrast with the petite Nakoruru, tall, elegant Charlotte, and lithe, slimly-built Shiki, Darli is broad-framed, physically ripped, and attractive all in one.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Make the mistake of calling her a lowly ship-builder and you'll soon learn that her hands are just as capable of breaking bones.
    • Damaging one of her ships, which is what triggered her to get involved in the events of the game.
  • BFS: Wields a giant saw with a serrated edge like a shark's teeth that she uses like a huge sword.
  • Boobs of Steel: She has one of the largest busts of any female character in the series and uses a fighting style that revolves around extremely hard-hitting blows.
  • Dreadlock Warrior: Sports shoulder-length dreads that are coloured pinkish-purple at the tips.
  • The Drunken Sailor: Befitting her nautical background, in one of her win-poses, she grabs a huge barrel of grog and enthusiastically chugs away.
  • Fashionable Asymmetry: Has various holsters for holding tools strapped onto her left leg.
  • Foreign Fanservice: Though it is currently unknown from where exactly she originates, she certainly looks the part in her capacity as the series’ sole African character.
  • The Lad-ette: She's physically ripped, fights in a highly aggressive, masculine style, loves a drink, works in construction, speaks in a bluff, boisterous tone and has no time whatsoever for weaklings.
  • Martial Arts and Crafts: She developed a fighting style based on her advanced construction skills and her weapon, “Libertalia", is more like a multi-tool than a traditional weapon, but she's no less deadly with it.
  • Meaningful Name: "Darli" is an abbreviation of "darling", and her full name is a Shout-Out to the Jimi Hendrix song Dolly Dagger, which describes a dangerous woman note  who'll "make you stagger" and "drinks blood from a jagged edge."
  • Named Weapon: Her giant saw-bladed sword is named “Libertalia”, in honour of a semi-mythical Malagasy pirate colony.
  • Parts Unknown: Almost all (human) characters in the series are ascribed a city/province/country of origin (all three for many of the Japanese characters). Darli is the exception, and her birthplace is simply listed as "somewhere at sea", which could literally be anywhere — we don't even (yet) know which island she washed up on. All we know so far is that she has “African roots” as confirmed by producer Nobuyuki Kuroki and that she was born “at sea” as per her bio. However, there are two key clues that help to pinpoint her current origin. The first is that she named her weapon “Libertalia”, which was a semi-mythical pirate state based on the (African) island of Madagascar. That fits with her African roots and ship-builder/piratey vibe. The second clue is even more compelling; — in another interview with the dev team they share a mood-board of Darli’s concept art, where the flag of Madagascar itself is featured, apparently used as inspiration certainly for her green/red/white colour palette, but also likely as a nod to her origin.
  • Pirate Girl: In looks only. She’s specifically described as “the most badass sailor and shipwright to ever sail the seven seas" and her weapon is adorned with a skull and crossbones motif, but according to Word of God, she's not an actual pirate and was in fact saved by a group of pirates as a child and is now the leader of a group of female ship-builders. She even explains this misunderstanding herself in her epilogue:
    "A pirate? Yes, many make that mistake about me... I'm merely a shipbuilder that can build pretty much anything. Well? Pretty cool, no?"
  • Punched Across the Room: Even if she loses her weapon, she's still a force to be reckoned with and comes equipped with an attack-absorbing, wind-up punch that sends the opponent flying if it connects.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Her story mode features her travelling around the world in search of the mysterious masked man who wrecked the ship she was building. She never actually finds him because he isn't one of the fighters. After she goes home (upon defeating Shizuka), she finishes construction of her ship and finally finds the guy, who was on her home island all along.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Her sword gets its name from the supposed anarchist, free colony founded by the pirate Captain James Misson in Madagascar in the late 17th century, though historians don't believe it actually existed.
    • Her unique unarmed special is a haymaker that's unblockable and will probably kill you in one hit, but it's charge up time and predictability make it Awesome, but Impractical is quite obviously inspired by Ralf Jones' Galactica Phantom super from The King of Fighters
  • Statuesque Stunner: She's a very attractive woman and by far the tallest female character — she's noticeably taller than most of the men, even.
  • Stripperiffic: Wearing a halter-neck bikini and only a sarong to cover up, she sports one of briefest outfits of all the women in the series.
  • Swiss Army Weapon: While her "Libertalia" starts out as a giant saw, she can switch out the bit at the end with other tools such as a giant hammer, and a drill.
  • Too Many Belts: Sports three belts around her waist, some sort of belted holster on her thigh and a further belt around her calf for a grand total of eight individual buckles.
  • Wrench Wench: She seems to be the nautical equivalent of one, sporting various tools you'd expect of a shipwright. Even her main weapon is a giant sized saw.

    Wu-Ruixiang 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/17_wuruixiang.png
Origin: The Imperial Palace, Beijing, Qing Empire Flag note 
Weapon: Chaoji Zhāolóng Luopan note , a Chinese compass
Voiced by note 
A young woman who serves the Qing Dynasty, and the descendant of a venerable fengshui clan. For generations they have been charged with the defence of the ley linesnote , traveling the world at the behest of the Qing Emperor. Though wise, she is extremely clumsy. Worse yet, she isn't athletically inclined and prefers to stay indoors. Her secret arts manifest the powers of divine beasts, and there is nothing that is impossible for the best of the Dynasty's fengshui practitioners — she can even call forth a dragon.
  • Ancestral Weapon: Her enchanted compass was bestowed upon her by grandfather and she cares for it deeply, expressing concern that it has become scratched after some battles.
  • Anime Chinese Girl: The series’ very first version, she sports a prerequisite Qipao in jade green.
  • Attack Reflector: Kirin Earthen Rampage — a counter that reflects projectiles and any mid/high attack hitting her luópan.
  • The Beast Master: She calls forth the elemental powers of divine beasts, and she can even summon a dragon for her super.
  • Beauty Mark: To the right of her mouth.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: A seemingly timid, studious girl whose appearance belies her deadly summoning powers.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Despite speaking Japanese in all her cutscenes, Ruixiang speaks Mandarin Chinese when performing her special moves.
  • Blind Without 'Em: If she loses her weapon, she also drops her glasses, which causes her to walk around unsteadily, muttering “megane...megane” (“my glasses”) as she tries to locate them.
  • Blue Blood: As noted below, Wu is an august, aristocratic name dating back to the offspring of the sons of a Zhou Dynasty duke. According to her bio, Ruixiang herself was born within the Imperial Palace (AKA the "Forbidden City") and her family is stated to be a venerable clan who serve the Emperor himself.
  • Buxom Is Better: Her voluptuous figure is emphasised in most of her accompanying artwork.
  • Combat Stilettos: Wears a pair of jade-green court shoes with built-up heels.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: She’s adorably uncoordinated, often tripping over her feet and falling over from the momentum of some of her stronger attacks.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: On initial inspection, her speed is lethargic, her damage output low and her standard hits have short reach and are quite sluggish. However, she has arguably the best projectile game out of the entire cast, with high, medium and low fireballs that become active very early in their animation. Her shield counter can also reflect projectiles, in addition to being a strong anti-aggression tool, but Ruixiang’s most defining feature is without doubt her ground trap — White Tiger Fangs — which makes her a character for players who like crazy setups and stylish juggles.
  • Dragons Are Divine: The dragon she summons in her super is listed in the move-list as a Yellow Dragon, which is likely Huanglong. Her rage move invokes the nine-headed dragon Kuzuryu, and her lightning bolt special move is based on Seiryuu.
  • Dragons Up the Yin Yang: Ticks both boxes — her luópan features a large yin-yang motif and she can call forth an enormous Oriental dragon to incinerate her opponents.
  • Elemental Powers: Ruixiang is able to use elemental-based attacks, thanks to her enchanted compass, via which she can fire a shard of ice, blast the opponent with flame, lay a trap of razor-sharp branches, and summon a lightning bolt.
  • The Four Gods: Among her animal-based moves are the Black Tortoise Torrent, Vermilion Bird Blaze, White Tiger Fangs, and Azure Dragon Thunderstrike.
  • Genius Ditz: Despite her clumsiness, she's actually quite wise.
  • Gorgeous Period Dress: Notwithstanding the large splits up the sides, her beautiful dress and hairstyle are an accurate representation of the court fashions of Qing Dynasty China.
  • Hair Decorations: She sports easily the most extravagant hairstyle in the series, with her (very) long hair piled up on top of her head in an elaborate Qing Dynasty coiffure, held in place with a large clasp and various ornamental pins. Two large goldfish-shaped pendants swing down from either side.
  • Imperial China: Taking into account her traditionally elaborate costuming, her role as an Imperial fengshui practitioner, her august Wu heritage, her exotic weapon (complete with yin-yang motif), and the fact she commands an actual dragon, she's Imperial China practically incarnate.
  • Impractically Fancy Outfit: Her Qipao dress, ornate hair-style and high-heels are rather impractical for combat, although she is a bit less physical in her fighting style compared to other characters, relying far more on magic to augment her moves.
  • Improbable Weapon User: All of her fellow fighters in the reboot use real-life weaponry (albeit with a fantasy twist). In contrast, Ruixiang’s luópan (Chinese compass) stands out as being far more magic-based and fantastical as a primary weapon.
  • Lady of Black Magic: She's one of the series' purely magic-based fighters, and her special moves rely on summoning the elemental powers of divine beasts to do the fighting for her.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Her compass has a handle in the back and functions just like a shield, with which she is able to defend herself. It also functions as an attacking weapon, and she is able to shield bash her opponents too.
  • Magic Compass: Her weapon appears as some form of gong/shield, but it is in fact an enchanted compass, used to summon divine beasts.
  • Meaningful Name: "Wu" is a catch-all term commonly used to refer to various Chinese dynasties, rulers, people and names. Her given name, Ruìxiāng (瑞香), is the Chinese name of the winter daphne, a species of fragrant pink flowers that are also poisonous.
  • Meganekko: She exhibits the sweet, intelligent, endearing qualities and becomes adorably befuddled if she loses her glasses.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: For her super, she trips over and accidentally summons a gigantic golden dragon, who proceeds to incinerate her opponent whilst she looks on in horror, trying to calm it down, apparently feeling she's gone too far.
  • Reluctant Warrior: As loyal as she is to the Emperor, if she can avoid it, she’d rather not go into battle on his behalf, which is exemplified in her ending where, having defeated Shizuka, she is soon summoned to the Imperial throne room and given orders to head out from the comfort of the palace once again on a new mission — the look on her face is a picture of horrified bewilderment.
  • She's Got Legs: Her court dress is split on both sides up to the waist, revealing her shapely legs. Her repertoire of kicks is lacking somewhat however, due to her being an indoorsy kind of girl.
  • Shield Bash: All of her standard hits involve her walloping the opponent with her shield-like luópan, either as a blunt smash or with its serrated edgenote . As one of the very few characters who wields a blunt weapon, her attacks aren’t accompanied with the usual slashing/hacking sound effects, but rather a gloriously satisfying metallic *CLANG* upon contact with the opponent.
  • Shrinking Violet: She tends to seclude herself indoors and is of a rather shy disposition.
  • Smart People Wear Glasses: She’s an Imperial fengshui practitioner and sports a pair of neat, black spectacles.

    Yashamaru Kurama 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/18_yashamaru.png
Origin: Otagi District, Yamashiro Province, Japan Flag note 
Weapon: Shanaō note , a nagamaki
Voiced by note 
A young, fallen samurai. He loathes villains who exploit the weak for financial gain, and stalks the shadows as the phantom thief Karasu-Tengu. Because his father was executed on false charges in the past, he has developed a deep and unparalleled hatred for the Shogunate. Brandishing his heirloom nagamaki, Shanaō, he fights using the ancestral tengu powers he has inherited. When Karasu-Tengu sows the breeze above with his blade, the wicked below shall reap the whirlwind...
  • Animal Motifs: He associates himself with crows.
  • Bishōnen: Underneath his mask, he has an attractive, youthful face.
  • Code Name: Uses the alias Karasu-Tengu — "the Crow Tengu".
  • Cool Mask: Wears a samurai mask designed so as to resemble a crow-tengu's beak.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Wears full-plate samurai armour in deepest black, but is more of a Well-Intentioned Extremist than a straight up bad guy and cares for the common people.
  • Dash Attack: He has a special move where he dashes forwards and thrusts his nagamaki. This move can also be done in the air as part of his aerial capabilities.
  • Double Jump: In keeping with his avian theme, he is capable of jumping twice in the air and is the only character in the 2019 game to be able to do so.
  • Eyes of Gold: Yashamaru's eyes shine in gold color when using his tengu powers.
  • Flechette Storm: His weapon-flipping move features him firing a volley of energy-infused feathers at the opponent.
  • It's Personal: Because his father was executed on false charges in the past, he has developed a deep and unparalleled hatred for the Shogunate. This reason is what makes Yoshitora Tokugawa his rival in his story.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Wields a nagamaki, which is a long handled katana traditionally used by infantry men against cavalry.
  • Knight In Sour Armor: He's a brooding, despondent ronin who became totally disillusioned with fighting for what he sees as a completely corrupt Shogunate.
  • Just a Kid: In 2019 game, Hattori Hanzo is surprised to find out how young the Karasu-Tengu really is.
  • Just Like Robin Hood: He's a thief who preys on villains who exploit the weak for financial gain.
  • Meaningful Name: Mount Kurama is a mountain associated to Tengu legends, and Yasha is the japanese rendition of "Yaksha", a buddhist nature demon.
  • Mystical White Hair: Sports a mop of grey-white hair tied up in a samurai top-knot — possibly a side-effect of his tengu bloodline. His hair changes to black when using his tengu powers.
  • Named Weapon: His nagamaki Shanaō.
  • Perpetual Molt: Many of his movements and attacks are accompanied by a scattering of shedded crow's feathers, befitting his crow-tengu heritage.
  • Phantom Thief: Moonlights as the phantom thief Karasu-Tengu.
  • Ronin: He’s a fallen samurai who abandoned the Shogun after his father’s death.
  • Spin Attack: Yashamaru has a special move where he leaps into the air before spinning himself and his nagamaki at a vertical angle, slashing at his opponent and ending with a final downward slash.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Yashamaru's match-winning animation sees him turn his back to the player — a crow then flies on-screen with Yashamaru disappearing off-screen just as it flies away, leaving only feathers on the stage.
  • Stepping-Stone Sword: His intro animation and certain moves have him perched on the top of his nagamaki's handle.
  • Super Mode: Yashamaru's Rage Explosion functions as this. When activated, he taps into his Tengu powers which enhances all of his moves and makes him act more aggressively in battle. He'll even change some of his phrases when using his Tengu powers.
  • Tengu: His long-nosed mask is supposed to evoke the crow-billed variant. Additionally, the power of the tengu has also been passed down to him and his blood-type is listed in his official bio as "not applicable as his bloodline is that of the tengu."
  • The Stoic: He's a calm and serious individual who rarely expresses any emotions other than anger in battle.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: He can throw his nagamaki like a javelin and it can return to his hand via teleportation or he can teleport to his nagamaki.
  • Weapon Twirling: Certain animations show him spinning the nagamaki in his hand.
  • You Killed My Father: Albeit indirectly, he blames Yoshitora, who was too busy being a playboy and shirking his responsibilities to notice the growing corruption in his family's government, which resulted in Yashamaru’s father being framed and executed.

    The Final Boss (SPOILER WARNING

Shizuka

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/shizuka_2.png
Origin: Aminochō Iso, Tango Province, Japan Flag note 
Weapon (Round 1): Four telekinetic hand fans
Voiced by: note 
Fully titled Shizuka Gozen (Lady Shizuka). Based on the Heian era poet of the same name, she is the source of the mysterious evil manifesting in Japan during 1787. Shizuka died some time before the game's events, however her bitterness and grief over her own death and that of her beloved made her soul unable to move to the afterlife. Although initially appearing to be a vengeful spirit, her actions and words seem contradictory, as though she is merely a vessel for a higher, more malevolent power...
  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: In her vulnerable state, Shizuka loses her kimono, but is covered in blue light and has no visible genitalia or nipples.
  • Big Bad: She's the last boss of the 2019 reboot, and following Mizuki, she's also the second female boss in the series, and the third (after Amakusa and Gaoh) to be based on a real person.
  • Black Eyes of Crazy: When her mask gets knocked off in Round 2, it's shown she has black irises with yellow pupils.
  • Blue Blood: She was the daughter of Imperial court dancer Iso no Zenji, and whilst she is usually ascribed the title “Gozen” (Lady), she was also known as one of the “seven princesses of Tango” (her home province), so in terms rank, she’s right up there with Yoshitora.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Her soul was prevented from moving on to the afterlife by an unknown entity and corrupted to serve their ends. The post-ending credits reveal that Ambrosia was the one behind her resurrection, as Amakusa's orb is shown manifesting.
  • Break Meter: In her normal state, she tanks all hits and takes only tiny damage. Batter her enough though, and she'll groan with horror and drop (naked) to the floor, stunned. In this vulnerable state, she can be attacked normally, though she'll only take 3-5 hits before reverting to her more powerful state.
  • Combat Hand Fan: She fights with multiple hand-fans which are controlled through telekinesis. They can be spun at the opponent, and also shield her from aerial attacks.
  • Disappears into Light: After she is defeated, Shizuka regains her consciousness and is finally freed from the demonic possession. She thanks the chosen character for saving her and soon fades into light, ascending to the heavens above.
  • Demonic Possession: She isn't actually evil, but the unknown entity controlling her definitely is. The post-credits scene reveals that Ambrosia was behind her summoning.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Shizuka Gozen lived during the Heian era, at least 600 years before the events of the game.
  • Flying Weapon: Her weapons are telekinetically-controlled fans that hover around her.
  • Gorgeous Period Dress: Her beautifully voluminous, long-sleeved kimono is Heian-era in style, evidencing her ancient origin.
  • Hell Is That Noise: As soon as she starts tapping on her tsuzumi, beware — the ominous taps herald her deadly floating katana attack, and it's therefore a sound players will soon come to dread.
  • Historical-Domain Character: She's based on the Heian-era poet, Shizuka Gozen (one of the mistresses of the legendary general Minamoto no Yoshitsune), and much like several other characters in the series including fellow boss Amakusa, she actually existed in ancient times.
  • Impractically Fancy Outfit: She sports possibly the most elaborate, encumbering outfit seen in the series thus far (even more than Amakusa, which is saying something), with a hemline and sleeves that are both way beyond floor-length.
  • Instrument of Murder: Wields the Hatsune drum in the second round. According to folk tales, Hatsune was a keepsake given to her by Minamoto no Yoshitsune, and it carries the souls of two magical foxes that were used to create the drum's skins. The story is featured in the Bunraku / Kabuki plays Yoshitsune Zenbon Sakura and Hatsune no ko.
  • Kimono Fanservice: Her elaborate kimono not only shows off her great legs, but it’s also draped low around her shoulders.
  • Meaningful Name: “Shizuka” typically translates to “quiet flower”. True to the translation, she is The Stoic. "Gozen" is an archaic Japanese honorific used for noble women analogous to the English title Lady.
  • Mind over Matter: In battle, for the most part, she is serenely still and uses telekinesis to control her weapons, which are multiple dart-like fans she can fire at the opponent.
  • Musical Assassin: In the second round of the battle against her, she produces a small tsuzumi drum, which she taps ominously to control a deadly floating katana that strikes quickly and drains merciless damage.
  • Mysterious Veil: Her face is part-covered by drapery from her head-piece. It gets destroyed when you win a round.
  • Power Floats: She glides about the arena in a seated pose, her hands folded demurely, whilst her kimono billows out around her.
  • Purgatory and Limbo: Her tragic deathnote  led her to dwell in a dark area of Rengoku (purgatory), which allowed Ambrosia's evil aura to contact and consume her in order to unleash its terrible power upon Japan.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Befitting her Heian-era look, her black her is incredibly long and cascades out behind her.
  • She's Got Legs: Her outfit draws a lot of attention to her exposed legs.
  • SNK Boss: Like you wouldn't believe. She takes inspiration from Bloody Marie and is fought in phases. In her normal state, she tanks your attacks effortlessly, has no hit-stun whatsoever, and spams high-damage fan attacks from across the screen including a command grab that hits on both sides. Oh, and you cannot use Issen against her. Fortunately, attacking her enough times puts her into a vulnerable state that takes more damage.
  • Supernatural Is Purple: Some form of swirling, eldritch mist flows and roils out beneath her as she glides about.
  • Tranquil Fury: Unleashes hell onto her opponents, but remains pretty much motionless, sitting serenely like she's about to take tea.
  • Turns Red: Much like Amakusa in the first game and Zankuro in the third, she powers up once you win a round and becomes much harder.
  • Undeathly Pallor: Her skin is porcelain pale.
  • Unwitting Pawn: She is merely a vessel for a greater evil. As the post-credits scene reveals, the evil in question is Ambrosia, as Amakusa's orb is shown being created.
  • When She Smiles: Shizuka gives a beautiful smile of happiness after she is freed from her demonic possession.
  • Youkai: She appears to be in the thrall of a Tsukimono (literally "possessing thing") until the player literally beats it out of her.


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